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LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round 3 Day 3: April 23rd - Latest News, Scores and Match Reports

LV= Insurance County Championship 2022
LV= Insurance County Championship 2022
©Cricket World / John Mallett
 

Here is all the latest news, scores and match report updates from the LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round 3 Day 3: April 23rd

Daily Round Ups 

Click here for Thursday April 21st LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round Up

Click here for Friday April 22nd LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round Up

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Saturday April 23rd


Division One


Kent vs Hampshire, Canterbury

Hampshire are in sight of a heavy victory over Kent in their LV= Insurance County Championship match at Canterbury, having reduced the hosts to 78 for three at stumps on day three, still needing another 269 to avoid an innings defeat.

Hampshire declared on 652 for six at tea, a lead of 347, on a day when the home side laboured throughout.

Liam Dawson hit his highest first class score of 171, from 268 balls with three sixes and 20 fours, while Ben Brown hit 157 from 198 balls with 15 fours, as the duo put on Hampshire record partnership of 273 for the fifth wicket.

Kyle Abbott took two for nine in Kent’s second innings, removing both Zak Crawley and Daniel Bell-Drummond in the space of four balls, while Felix Organ, who has one for seven bowled Tawanda Muyeye, leaving Kent hoping for some last day heroics from Ben Compton, who was unbeaten on 37 at stumps. Jordan Cox is the other not out batsman on three.

“It’s going to be a long, old struggle from here,” a Kent member said, with some understatement, during the tea interval, having witnessed the home side get pummelled for the first two sessions.

Hampshire had resumed on 337 for four and although Kent were able to take the new ball they began day three as they’d finished day two, bowling a buffet delivery every time it looked like they might build some pressure: after a maiden from Matt Milnes, Dawson took 13 from Nathan Gilchrist’s next over.

Brown carved Milnes for four to reach 50 and Dawson straight drove the same bowler to reach three figures before the first hour was up. Hampshire were 337 for four at lunch, already 152 ahead, and when Ollie Robinson dropped Dawson off Hamid Qadri in the first over after the resumption it set the tone for the rest of the afternoon session.

Dawson cracked Qadri for six in his next over and landmarks and records were duly ticked off with an almost casual ease. Brown reached his century with a glanced three off Qadri. Dawson brought up his 150 cutting the same bowler to point for four and then beat his previous highest first-class score of 169 when he paddled Darren Stevens to the fine leg boundary.

He finally holed out to Tawanda Muyeye and was caught by Jordan Cox and Muyeye then claimed a second wicket when Brown tried to reverse sweep him and he was caught by Gilchrist, but there was no relief for the hosts. Felix Organ and Keith Barker scored freely, both reaching 44 not out at tea.

Crawley and Compton batted well for the first hour of the evening session, but after 15 overs of resistance when they offered hardly any chances, Abbott got Crawley lbw for 29 and Bell-Drummond for a duck when he swished him to Organ at mid-off.

Muyeye was then bowled by Organ for three and although Compton and Cox survived to stumps, Hampshire remain heavy favourites going into to day four.

Lancashire vs Gloucestershire, Emirates Old Trafford

Josh Bohannon scored a double century and James Anderson took his first wicket of the season on a day of total domination for Lancashire against a struggling and under-strength Gloucestershire at Emirates Old Trafford.

With the hosts declaring at tea on the third day on 556 for seven, this LV=Insurance County Championship Division One clash looks to be heading only one way after the visitors were reduced to 67 for three at the close still trailing by 237 runs going into the final day.

Resuming on 289 for three, Bohannon and his skipper, Dane Vilas, simply began where they left off the previous evening as they milked an increasingly ragged Gloucestershire bowling attack throughout the morning.

Vilas’ tireless running between the wickets kept the visitors firmly under pressure as the South African reached his half century off 51 balls before the slightly more guarded Bohannon reached his 150 from 328 balls.

The fourth wicket partnership continued to grow until Bohannon, having beaten his previous highest first class score of 174, reached his double century just before lunch quickly followed by Vilas registering his 24th first class century on the stroke of 1pm.

At the interval the quirky statistic that no wickets had fallen in each of the three uninterrupted morning sessions meant little to Gloucestershire who were still ruing and paying for their alarming capitulation on day one after a good start.

The partnership had just ticked past 200 when Vilas, looking to increase the run rate, toe-ended a Josh Shaw delivery straight to Miles Hammond at cover point to depart for 109.

Phil Salt joined Bohannon at the crease and breezed his way to 21 before he danced down the track to Zafar Gohar and was stumped by a grateful James Bracey.

The wicket provided at least some reward for the determined slow left armer who continued to bowl a nagging leg stump line throughout a mammoth spell that saw him send down 65 overs by the time he left the field having finished with four for 135 with Hassan his final wicket.

Bohannon’s mammoth innings finally ended on 231 when he mistimed a sweep shot off Graeme van Buuren and gloved one up in the air for Bracey to scamper to his left and claim.

The Bolton-born batter faced 467 balls and batted for 553 minutes in compiling a knock that will be certain to have made the England selectors ponder his attributes more closely.

Both Danny Lamb and Saqib Mahmood then enjoyed themselves before tea hitting four sixes between them and putting on an unbeaten 55 for the eighth wicket until Vilas called a halt to proceedings with Lancashire leading by 304.

A rusty looking Anderson had played second fiddle to Hassan during Gloucestershire’s first innings but he took the new ball and looked somewhere close to his best in an opening spell that saw him claim Australian Marcus Harris for seven with a steeply rising delivery that was edged through to Salt.

Mahmood, who could well be joining Anderson in the England Test attack after an impressive debut in the West Indies, was causing problems of his own and he accounted for Chris Dent whose loose cut shot to Salt was not what was called for by Gloucestershire as they teetered on 36 for two.

Meanwhile Hammond was standing firm and had hit five boundaries to prompt a recovery of sorts which was brought to a swift and brutal end by a wonderful Hassan yorker which left a bemused Bracey walking off on 14 and the Pakistani paceman cradling a broken stump such was the delivery’s velocity.

Hammond, unbeaten on 24, and van Buuren, on two not out, saw things through to the close but with seven wickets needed to claim victory Lancashire’s attack will be confident a second win of the season is within grasp.

 

 

Northamptonshire vs Yorkshire, The County Ground Northampton

George Hill hit a magnificent undefeated 151 in just his 11th  first-class game to put Yorkshire in complete control on day 3 of this LV= Insurance County Championship match against Northamptonshire.

It was a maiden ton for the former England Under 19s vice-captain who shared two huge partnerships as Northamptonshire’s bowlers were put to the sword. First Hill and Dawid Malan posted a 157-run stand, 100 of them coming in the morning session alone. Malan passed 50 for the third successive innings this season but missed out on another opportunity to reach three figures and impress the England selectors.

Hill then combined with Harry Brook in a blistering all-out assault which garnered 148 runs at a pace more typical of a T20 affair.

Set a notional 499 to win on an increasingly flat surface, Northamptonshire openers Ricardo Vasconcelos and Will Young safely negotiated a tricky final session, posting a 56-run opening stand before the close.

The hosts had needed to make early inroads to claw their way back after conceding a sizeable first innings deficit. They were buoyed by the prize wicket of Adam Lyth soon after the former England opener reached his half-century. Lyth played a flat-footed drive to Matt Kelly only to edge the ball through to the keeper. Malan was then reprieved for the second time in the match on 26 when Saif Zaib shelled a chance at backward point.

From then on it was all-out attack. Despite a typically tight spell from Ben Sanderson early on, Yorkshire found runs increasingly easy to come by at the other end with Kelly offering plenty to tuck into on middle and leg.

All-rounder Hill, 21, was promoted up the order last year to bat in top three and clearly enjoys Wantage Road having recorded his previous best score of 71 in the corresponding fixture last summer.

He grew increasingly confident, timing the ball sweetly and going on the offensive to Simon Kerrigan, using his feet to hit the spinner down the ground for a four and a six before driving him through extra cover for four more to bring up Yorkshire’s 150.

After lunch Northamptonshire turned to the spinners to get ahead of the over rate but they presented little danger for Yorkshire who rotated the strike at will in cold, blustery conditions.

Malan had played the ball pleasantly off his legs, unfurled some sumptuous drives and treated the bad balls with contempt. His downfall came when he targeted the shorter boundary against spinner Rob Keogh, but his slog sweep picked out Emilio Gay who took a good diving catch just in front of the ropes.

Joined by Brook, Hill cut a Kelly long-hop for four to move into the nineties before scampering a single to reach three figures off exactly 200 balls.

With the declaration in mind, the Yorkshire youngsters compounded Northamptonshire’s misery with a flurry of boundaries either side of tea. Kerrigan recorded an unwanted century of his own when he conceded 100 runs amid the onslaught. Brook hit him for four consecutive boundaries before Hill dispatched him over extra cover for four more. Hill also took on the seamers with two short-arm jabs over long-on for six before the declaration finally came.

Vasconcelos was hit in ribs by Jordan Thompson early in his innings and survived a confident appeal for caught behind off Rauf on four, but soon started to find the boundary regularly.

Yorkshire’s hopes were raised briefly when Will Young offered a difficult low chance behind and Matthew Revis got his first delivery to bounce and almost draw the edge of Vasconcelos’ bat. Otherwise, Northamptonshire’s openers looked increasingly comfortable. They have a huge task ahead of them tomorrow though if they are to bat out the day and secure the draw.

Surrey vs Somerset, Kia Oval

England’s current Test wicketkeeper Ben Foakes had to leave the field after clashing heads with Jamie Overton, at first slip, while taking a brilliant diving catch in Surrey’s finely-balanced LV= Insurance County Championship match against Somerset at the Kia Oval.

A stretcher was initially brought out as a stricken Foakes was given lengthy treatment, but he was eventually able to walk off unaided and will hope to play a further part in a Division One game that could still go either way after three absorbing days.

Tom Abell added a fluent 68-ball 53 to his career-best 150 not out earlier in the match and Tom Banton also hit a determined 52 as Somerset reached stumps 225 runs ahead of Surrey at 196 for nine in their second innings.

A wonderful day's cricket ended on the stroke of 7pm with Jordan Clark having Peter Siddle caught behind by Foakes’ replacement, Ollie Pope, from the penultimate ball, and Surrey grabbed seven wickets for 73 runs after tea.

Somerset fell away alarmingly from 132 for 2 with Reece Topley, Clark, Jamie Overton and Ryan Patel making light of the absence from the seam attack of Sam Curran, who can only bowl a limited number of overs on England orders, and an injured James Taylor.

Topley, swinging the ball at good pace in a superlative seven-over spell of three for 9, bowled Craig Overton for nought in between having both Steven Davies (1) and Banton caught by Foakes. It was Banton’s dismissal which caused Foakes’ injury, with the keeper somehow clinging on despite his nasty collision with Overton, who had himself dived for the edge.

Abell’s third wicket stand of 89 with Banton had earlier kept Somerset ahead on points in what has so far been a fiercely-contested and high-quality game, while Peter Siddle’s excellent six for 51 had previously limited Surrey’s first innings to 308 despite a superb 80 from Curran that featured a six and 10 fours – the last of them a dreamy extra cover drive off Siddle.

Surrey, resuming on 204 for five in reply to Somerset’s first innings 337, initially saw Curran and Will Jacks extend their sixth wicket partnership to 73 before Siddle began to tilt the game Somerset’s way.

Curran, on 44 overnight, swiftly completed his half-century – reaching the landmark with a lovely straight driven four off Craig Overton – and continued to attack the bowling, dancing down the pitch to drive Jack Leach back over his head for six when the England left-arm spinner was brought on for a four-over spell ahead of the second new ball.

Jacks, after adding just 14 to his overnight score, fell to Siddle in the fourth over with the new ball when he edged the former Australia fast bowler to second slip where Matt Renshaw took a sharp catch throat-high.

And Renshaw, two overs later, pulled off an even better catch in the same position, this time low to his right, when Curran nibbled at Siddle, operating from around the wicket to the left-hander, and stomped off the field clearly livid with himself.

Curran, indeed, despite his all-rounder status and high talent, is still waiting for his first hundred in senior cricket. Across all formats the 23-year-old has now played 236 innings, 115 of them in first-class matches, with a highest score of 96.

Clark made 10 before being lbw to a Jack Brooks nip-backer and, after lunch, Jamie Overton’s unbeaten 27 from 45 balls – with a six bludgeoned off Siddle over long on – guided Surrey to a third batting point.

Siddle, though, had both Taylor and last man Topley caught at the wicket, for 9 and 1 respectively, to earn Somerset a 29-run first innings advantage.

Surrey hit back with the early wickets of both Somerset openers, Tom Lammonby caught down the legside off Clark for a bright 30 and Australian Test batsman Renshaw bowled by Overton for 10 six runs later.

It was a brilliant piece of fast bowling by Overton, against his former county, as he first struck the left-handed Renshaw on the visor of his helmet with a short ball and then produced a full ball which swung in to pluck out off stump as Renshaw shouldered arms.

Banton was then fortunate to survive his first over against Overton, who hit the shoulder of the bat with a fearsome lifter first ball – Banton collecting four runs as it flew away high over gully – before beating him twice outside off stump.

But the 23-year-old England white-ball international battled hard to build his own invaluable innings, in support of Abell, until his captain edged Patel’s medium pace to Foakes.

James Hildreth was then caught at first slip for 5 off a Clark outswinger and Topley’s dramatic three-wicket burst, culminating in the scalp of Banton, was followed later by Leach chopping on for 17 against a fired-up Overton.  

 

 

Warwickshire vs Essex, Edgbaston

England batter Dan Lawrence defied Warwickshire despite a hamstring injury as Essex battled to avoid defeat in a gripping LV=Insurance County Championship match at Edgbaston. 

Trailing by 217 on first innings, Essex closed the third day on 290 for eight - 73 ahead - with Lawrence, who batted at number seven and with a runner, having bolstered their resistance with a valiant 44 from 105 balls. 

The 24-year-old's movement was clearly restricted by the injury he sustained while chasing a ball in the field on the first day. But his resolve, in alliance with Simon Harmer (60 not out, 129 balls) in a seventh-wicket stand of 81 in 29 overs, kept their team alive. 

On a good batting pitch, Warwickshire's bowling was superbly led Oliver Hannon-Dalby (22-13-36-3) but they missed pace spearhead Liam Norwell, ruled out of the rest of this match by concussion after being hit on the head while batting. A scan has revealed no serious damage for Norwell who will now rest for a few days. 

Essex resumed on the third morning on nought for one, under serious pressure, but applied themselves diligently to the rearguard action. Several of their batsmen were guilty of reckless shots in the first innings, but this time they ensured that wickets had to be winkled out. 

Two were winkled out in the first session and three in the second. In the morning, Tom Westley, having eked ten runs from 62 minutes, fell to Will Rhodes and Alastair Cook (36, 85 balls, eight fours) to Hannon-Dalby, both caught by wicketkeeper Michael Burgess. 

Matt Critchley (49, 82 balls, nine four) batted attractively after lunch until his middle-stump was uprooted by Hannon-Dalby whose figures, at that point, were 13.1-11-9-3. Adam Wheater was bowled by a Henry Brookes no ball on six, but soon skied a good length delivery from the same bowler to mid off. 

Lawrence's entry with a runner showed Essex's determination to fight every inch of the way. He soon lost Adam Rossington who made a compact half-century (52, 80 balls, ten fours) before nicking an attempted cut at Danny Briggs.  

That was 172 for six and Essex were still in deep trouble, but Harmer, perhaps motivated in part by his sloppy dismissal in the first innings, knuckled down assiduously alongside Lawrence. The paired with patience and composure until Lawrence edged concussion substitute Miles to Burgess. 

Harmer and Shane Snater then added 46 in ten overs but the latter's punchy contribution (21, 33 balls) concluded in the day's penultimate over when he chipped Miles to mid-wicket. 

 

Division Two

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 Durham vs Nottinghamshire, Riverside

Nottinghamshire crushed Durham by an innings and 141 runs to clinch a dominant victory inside three days of their LV= Insurance County Championship Division Two clash at the Riverside.

Ben Slater scored his maiden first-class double century to propel the visitors to a commanding total of 488 for nine before the declaration came, leaving Durham requiring 259 runs to make Notts bat again.

However, the hosts collapsed in the afternoon amid fine bowling from the Midlands outfit to slump to a humbling defeat on home soil as Luke Fletcher and James Pattinson claimed three wickets apiece. Nottinghamshire notched 23 points as result of their impressive victory to move top of Division Two, while the home side collected only two from their dismal loss.

Day three began with the pressure on the home side to force their way back into the contest after Notts dominated with the bat on Friday. Matthew Potts should have broken the stand between Slater and James from the second ball of the day. He found James' outside edge, only for Scott Borthwick to put down the chance at first slip.

Fortunately for the Durham skipper it was not a costly drop as Potts removed James for 108, uprooting his middle stump with a delivery that kept low, ending the partnership for the fourth wicket at 222. The loss of James brought about a clatter of wickets in the Nottinghamshire lower middle order. Raine's first over of the day accounted for the dismissals of Steven Mullaney and Tom Moores before he pinned Liam Patterson-White lbw for one.

Slater was unfettered at the other end and worked his way past his previous first-class high score of 172, but faced a nervy wait over lunch five runs shy of a maiden double-century. It did not take long for the Notts opener to reach the milestone for the first time after the break, pushing George Drissell delivery through a gap in the off-side, completing a mammoth effort from 415 balls. Pattinson then played his role to perfection to further frustrate the hosts, providing valuable runs in the lower order in a stand worth 74 for the eighth wicket.

Potts returned for another backbreaking spell, and he earned his rewards by notching his second five-wicket haul, dismissing Pattinson and then Fletcher by removing both batters' middle stumps. Mullaney called time on the Notts' innings on 488 for nine with a dominant lead of 258 runs over the home side, with Slater unbeaten on a career-best 225 not out.

The visitors did not take long to make the breakthrough as Fletcher pinned Michael Jones lbw for four, which set the tone for the afternoon session. Keegan Petersen and Sean Dickson offered brief resistance with a 43-run stand aided by a slew of no-balls from the Nottinghamshire seamers, who were all guilty of overstepping one time or another. Pattinson made the breakthrough to spark a collapse in the Durham ranks, removing Petersen on a tight lbw decision, which may have been heading over the top.

Dane Paterson, who also had issues over-stepping, found his rhythm to dismiss Dickson for 19 before securing the prised scalp of David Bedingham for only four to leave the hosts reeling. When Ned Eckersley shouldered his arms at a seaming delivery from Fletcher, Durham were staring down the barrel at 85 for five at the tea interval.

Raine offered resistance for 31 balls, but when he became Fletcher's third victim the game was up for the home side. Patterson-White found Drissell's outside edge before Potts received a rasper from Pattinson that he fended to Moores behind the stumps. Borthwick was the final wicket to fall, clipping a tame shot straight to Patterson-White to present Pattinson with his third scalp to secure an emphatic victory for Notts on the road.

Glamorgan vs Middlesex, Sophia Gardens

Middlesex wrapped up victory against Glamorgan by an innings and 82 runs inside the first hour of the third day of their LV= Insurance County Championship match in Cardiff.

Glamorgan started the day still needing 111 runs to make Middlesex bat again but having seen the Middlesex tail put on 226 runs in their innings there would have been a glimmer of hope.

Those hopes faded very fast as two wickets fell within the first three overs of the day with Toby Roland-Jones claiming his first five wicket haul of the season.

Middlesex finish this match with 22 points to Glamorgan’s three after the visitors put in a near perfect performance on second and third days of this match.

The two Glamorgan not out batsmen at the start of the day were Sam Northeast and Michael Neser and it needed to be those two who put a real dent in the deficit. That is not what Glamorgan got. Both were dismissed by Toby Roland-Jones within the space of eight balls, Northeast edging to second slip and Neser caught at mid-on.

With just nine runs added to the overnight score Glamorgan were eight wickets down with Middlesex still over a hundred runs in front.

It was Tom Helm how wrapped things up, first trapping Timm van der Gugten lbw before bowling Michael Hogan when Glamorgan’s number 11 had a massive swing at a ball that crashed into his stumps.

The performance of the Middlesex bowlers will leave them with some interesting selection issues going forward. Roland-Jones, Helm, Martin Andersson and Shaheen Shah Afridi were all excellent in this game. With Ethan Bamber and Tim Murtagh waiting in the wings it will be interesting to see who misses out in the coming matches. 

For Glamorgan it will be a case of the team who were on the field in this match finding a way to replicate their performances from the victory over Nottinghamshire in the last round of the County Championship. 

 

Matthew Maynard, Glamorgan CCC Head Coach

I think it was a good toss to win. Middlesex exploited the conditions well, put us under a lot of pressure. I think the wicket was maybe a 220 to 250 par on first innings. So, we felt way below there. We didn’t show the same discipline with the bat that we showed in the first two games of the season. We didn’t set a tone in the second over and we had some soft dismissals in that first innings.

We fought back into the game really well with the bowling group, got us back in at 110 for six.  Got another one there you never know. There may have been a lead of 40 to 60 and we are well in the game. As it happened a 110 partnership followed by two 60 odd partnerships took the game away from us. The Middlesex bowlers exploited the conditions really well. Strong bowling attack, and yeah, they blew us away. 

Peter Handscombe, Middlesex CCC Captain

Great way to start, I think that’s pretty close to the blueprint that we want to play this, we have been doing a lot of work on our identity and how we want to go about it as a group. That was very, very impressive. To come in and see what all the boys have done over the pre-season, all the hard work they have done, to come out and play a game like that is just awesome.

We missed [Toby Roland-Jones] last year for quite a long period of the season so it is great to see him back, clean bill of health and just bowling beautifully. He didn’t miss, he just came in and to be relentless on his line and length. Credit to him, he has obviously done a lot of work to get his body right and then in pre-season he has come out better and stronger for it. 

Leicestershire vs Derbyshire, Uptonsteel County Ground

Derbyshire are within reach of a first victory of the LV= Insurance County Championship season after Leicestershire finished day three at the Uptonsteel County Ground six wickets down in their second innings and still 172 behind.

Leicestershire seamer Ed Barnes took five wickets in an innings for the first time earlier in the day as Derbyshire lost their last six first-innings wickets for 27.

But after a maiden century from Mattie McKiernan enhanced the value of Shan Masood’s superb double-hundred on Friday, Derbyshire still totalled 531 for a lead of 318.

It left Leicestershire, who had to fight rearguard actions to emerge with a draw from both of their opening Division Two matches, faced with surviving two sessions just to take the contest into the final day.  They succeeded in that but it will need an extraordinary effort from their tail to avoid defeat this time.

The morning belonged to McKiernan and latterly to Barnes, the Leicestershire seam bowler, whose dismissal of McKiernan launched an extraordinary spell within a spell that brought him all of his five wickets in the space of 26 deliveries at a cost of just eight runs.

McKiernan, a 27-year-old leg spinner who spent more than 12 years at  Lancashire without making a senior appearance, has played more white-ball cricket than red since joining Derbyshire in 2018 but that should soon be corrected on this evidence.

After playing an important role as one of double-centurion Masood’s partners on Friday, sharing a stand of 129 for the fourth wicket, McKiernan cut Callum Parkinson’s left-arm spin for three fours before moving into the 90s by pulling Barnes for six. His century came off 189 balls and contained 11 fours as well as that six.

Against a Leicestershire attack in which Will Davis could not participate because of injury, McKiernan and Leus Du Plooy took Derbyshire’s first-innings total beyond 500 for the second successive match - and in consecutive innings for only the second time in the county’s history - but when Barnes thudded one into McKiernan’s front pad to have him leg before, the narrative of the morning changed dramatically.

Barnes, who was nought for 93 before umpire Neil Bainton granted him this success, dismissed Anuj Dal lbw and had Alex Thomson caught behind from consecutive balls, before Nick Potts chopped on and Sam Conners was bowled. His final analysis read five for 101 but his 10-over spell on the day was worth five for 28.

After Parkinson wrapped up the innings on the stroke of lunch when Suranga Lakmal chipped him straight to short midwicket, Derbyshire made important inroads before tea as opener Hassan Azad and Leicestershire skipper Colin Ackermann both fell, along with George Rhodes.

Thomson accounted for Azad, the off-spinner’s turning delivery finding a thin outside edge that turned into a looping catch to Wayne Madsen at slip, seemingly via the left glove of wicketkeeper Brooke Guest.  He then bowled Rhodes before the introduction of Dal’s medium pace induced a miscued drive from Ackermann that went straight to short cover.

A stubborn 33 from Sam Evans ended when he was leg before to Sam Conners and Wiaan Mulder’s rather more entertaining 25 was terminated by the same method by 19-year-old Nick Potts, then Thomson held a stunning low return catch to remove Harry Swindells, with Louis Kimber 33 not out at the close.

 

Worcestershire vs Sussex, New Road

Worcestershire are celebrating their first victory of the season in the LV=Insurance County Championship after overcoming Sussex by an innings and 34 runs with a day to spare at New Road.

They had been denied victory by Leicestershire’s last wicket pair in their opening game when more than a day’s play was lost to rain but overwhelmed a below strength Sussex.

Sussex lost 15 wickets on the third day and, despite a first innings century from Cheteshwar Pujara and a half century from loanee Grant Stewart, they crumbled to a crushing setback.

Worcestershire dominated throughout and new Club Captain, Brett D’Oliveira, has scored 294 runs without being dismissed so far this summer.

Worcestershire also have a talismanic leader of their attack in D’Oliveira’s predecessor, Joe Leach, who is enjoying a new lease of life as one of the footsoldiers.

Dillon Pennington, who dismissed Pujara twice today, Charlie Morris, and Ed Barnard provided sterling support while emerging spinner, Josh Baker confirmed his promise.

Sussex were without half a dozen players through injury but results have been on a downward spiral for some time.

Since the start of last season, they have won only one of their 17 Championship matches and been beaten 11 times.

Sussex resumed on 169 for five, still 322 runs in arrears, with their hopes pinned firmly on Pujara who had scored an unbeaten 201 against Derbyshire in the previous match.

Pujara, unbeaten on 85 overnight, completed a fine century off 184 balls with 14 boundaries and he and Delray Rawlins negotiated the opening 50 minutes.

But the introduction of Pennington into the attack brought about a double breakthrough.

The former England Under-19 bowler has revealed his determination to perform on a more consistent basis this season and he soon shattered the stumps of Rawlins with a full length delivery.

Pennington then picked up the prized wicket of Pujara (109) who edged a fine ball which nipped away and he was caught by Ed Pollock at first slip.

Tom Alsop, finally came into bat at number seven after a severely bruised finger had prevented him from batting in the top three.

But the home side continued to probe away on a cool and overcast day and Barnard found the edge of Grant Stewart’s bat with Pollock holding onto another chance.

Alsop, on 28, had been run out against Derbyshire last week and he suffered the same fate thanks to sharp work by Pennington.

He played a delivery from Barnard to wide mid-on, set off for a risky single and failed to beat Pennington’s direct hit at the non striker’s end.

Morris wrapped up the innings when trapping Grant Burrows lbw on the stroke of lunch.

D’Oliveira’s decision to enforce the follow on soon brought dividends thanks to two wickets in two balls for Leach for the second time in the game.

Tom Haines nicked a fine delivery and keeper Ben Cox was alert to the situation and pouched a sharp catch in front of first slip.

The Leach-Cox combination then struck again to the next very delivery after Alsop pushed forward and found the outside edge.

Worcestershire were then cock-a-hoop when Pennington dismissed Pujara (12) for the second time in the day after knocking out his off stump.

Tom Clark was then guilty of a poor shot in trying to slog sweep Baker and inside-edged a catch to Cox and Mohammed Rizwan went lbw to Barnard.

A dismal day for Sussex was summed up when Rawlins failed to beat Barnard’s throw to Baker at the non-striker’s end after a mix-up with Ali Orr.

Orr provided some stubborn resistance in making 33 off 138 balls but was undone by a Baker delivery which bounced on him and caught at short leg.

D’Oliveira held onto a good catch running back to long off to dismiss Henry Crocombe (8) to give Baker a third wicket.

The Club Captain came into the attack for the first time and had Jamie Atkins caught at mid on.

Stewart struck Baker for four sixes in one over on his way to a 55 ball half century in some late defiance before Burrows went lbw to D’Oliveira to end proceedings.

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