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LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round 4 Day 3: 30th April - Latest News, Scores and Match Reports

Middlesex v Leicestershire, Lords
Middlesex v Leicestershire, Lords
©Cricket World / John Mallett
 

Here is all the latest news, scores and match report updates from the LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round 4 Day 3: 30th April.

Previous Day Reports


LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round 4 Day 1: 28th April

LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round 4 Day 2: 29th April

Saturday April 30th

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Division One

Somerset vs Warwickshire, The Cooper Associates County Ground

Somerset rounded off a resounding team display by defeating Warwickshire by an innings and 82 runs inside three days of their LV=Insurance County Championship game at Taunton. 

After starting with three successive defeats, Tom Abell's side is well and truly up and running after they completely outplayed the champions. 

They swiftly took Warwickshire's last first innings wicket in the morning to secure a first innings lead of 249, then bowled them out for 167 second time round. 

Jack Brooks led the way with four for 44 but it was a hugely impressive collective effort with all five bowlers used getting among the wickets and maintaining pressure on the batsmen. 

Sam Hain (43, 116 balls) and Will Rhodes (29, 93 balls) added 68 in 30 overs but it was an isolated show of defiance in an innings in which two wickets fell within five balls on four occasions.  

Warwickshire resumed on the third morning on 197 for nine and secured their first batting point in the first over but didn't get much further. Davey teased a fatal nick from Olly Hannon-Dalby to finish with three for 40. 

With the follow on enforced, Somerset's bowlers were soon back out there with their tails up and reduced Warwickshire's second innings  to 21 for three in the 16th over. They were backed up by superb catching as Craig Overton took a blinder at third slip to remove Alex Davies off Davey and was then the happy bowler when Dom Sibley edged to Tom Abell at fourth slip. When Rob Yates top-edged a pull at Brooks, Tom Lammonby judged the catch perfectly at mid on. 

Hain and Rhodes applied themselves valiantly before perishing in  successive overs in mid-afternoon. Rhodes offered no shot to a ball from Jack Leach which turned sharply into his stumps. Five balls later, Hain lifted a leg-side delivery from Brooks straight to short fine leg where Overton had just been deployed for that very shot. 

That plan having worked a treat, Somerset celebrated wildly as Brooks wheeled away to the mid-wicket boundary where he was joined by all his team mates. That got the crowd involved and, fuelled by their encouragement, Brooks added three more wickets in 17 balls. Michael  Burgess and Danny Briggs edged to wicketkeeper Steven Davies and Nathan McAndrew sliced to Matt Renshaw at second slip. 

Ther rout was rounded off shortly after tea by another two wickets in five balls. A superb grab at second slip by Renshaw disposed of Craig Miles off Overton then Lamb (40, 80 balls) missed a pull at Leach to end Somerset's long wait for a championship victory. 

Somerset captain Tom Abell said: 

"It feels very good. Results haven't gone our way in the last two or three weeks so this win and the manner of the performance is incredibly pleasing. It was a pretty complete performance from us. 

"We scored 450 having been put in on a wicket conducive to seamers and then our bowling attack asked questions of their batsmen the whole time. They all executed their plans perfectly. Brooksy is one of those players who, when he gets on a roll, he's impossible to stop and that was an unbelievable passage of play. The crowd really got involved and the connection between the crowd and the players was fantastic. It was amazing to be out there through that period. It was a very special session for us. 

"That was close to how we were playing our cricket a couple of years ago. I feel we are getting our identity back. I thought we were fantastic last week without getting the result but we're over the moon about this." 

 

Warwickshire first team coach Mark Robinson said: 

"We were well beaten - outplayed for three days. There's not a lot to say. We were poor but credit to Somerset, as poor as we were, they were outstanding. Olly Hannon-Dalby bowled really well but we just couldn't back him up and we let them get too many runs on what was probably a 320/280. Equally it wasn't a 70 for five wicket.  

"It wasn't for lack of effort and not for a lack of work-rate or anything else, it's just that sometimes our skills level is not where we need it to be at this present time. 

"We need to take this on the chin and move forward. There are no excuses. We won a good toss but couldn't bowl the right lengths and then Somerset's bowling attack is really well-suited to a pitch like this, a good cricket wicket. There is always a bit in it with the ball  and to be able to rotate five seamers against us was perfect."  

 

Essex vs Northamptonshire, The Cloud County Ground

Paul Walter and Matt Critchley staged a belligerent rearguard action to frustrate Northamptonshire’s hopes of claiming a morale-boosting victory at Chelmsford.

  The fourth-wicket pair came together at 58-3 shortly before tea and were still there at stumps having put on 91 valuable runs as Essex fought to save the LV= Insurance County Championship match.

  Essex, eventually dismissed in their first innings for 193, with Ben Sanderson finishing with 4-32, were asked to follow-on by Northamptonshire. By the close on day three they were 149-3, requiring another 48 to make the visitors bat again. Walter was 40 not out, Critchley 44.

  That Essex are still in the game was largely down to Shane Snater, who almost single-handedly ensured the calamitous batting of the previous evening – when they were reduced to 83-8 – did not become even worse. However, his career-best unbeaten 79 could not prevent Essex going straight back in again, 197 runs in arrears.

  Snater dominated stands of 69 for the ninth wicket with Mark Steketee and 41 for the last with Sam Cook. More importantly for Essex, in their attempt to avoid back-to-back Championship defeats, his stoic resolution took a session out of the equation.

  The Zimbabwean-born Dutch international shone with a series of hooks, pulls and drives that were as effortless as they were exquisite. He accounted for the majority of the 98 runs scored for the loss of the last two wickets in an entertaining morning session.

  When Snater dabbed down to the vacant third-man boundary for the ninth of his ten fours, it carried him not only from 47 to 51 but to both his highest score for Essex (previously 48) and his highest in first-class cricket (50 not out for the Netherlands).

  Northamptonshire’s tactics seemed a little awry on a pitch that returned to its earlier placid state, and it was 70 minutes before front-line bowler Gareth Berg was finally introduced. To underline what his absence might have missed, with his fourth ball he had Steketee playing all around a full-pitched delivery and losing his off-stump.

  Still, Snater motored on regardless, capping his 94-ball knock with a towering straight six off Rob Keogh. His fun was curtailed, though, when Cook pushed forward to the off-spinner on the dot of lunch and was snaffled at slip.

  Without a moment’s hesitation Essex were asked to bat again. They were breifly in trouble losing three wickets in 14 overs. wSir Alastair Cook went for 19, caught at first slip off Tom Taylor, who had just been hit for three backfoot, off-side boundaries in an over by the former England captain.

  Tom Westley was next to go, pinned in a muddle of indecisiveness on his crease by Luke Procter, before Nick Browne wafted at Keogh and became the latest victim to a slip catch.

  Browne’s wicket went down in the midst of a sequence of 38 dot balls as Essex bustled along at a rate of barely two an over. There was another spell of five successive maidens that epitomised the Essex approach as Walter and Critchley effectively shut up shop after tea.

 

 

 

Gloucestershire vs Surrey, Bristol County Ground

Rediscovering his best form when it was most needed, Chris Dent scored a superb double hundred and batted all day to frustrate First Division leaders Surrey and usher Gloucestershire towards safety on day three of this LV=Insurance County Championship match at Bristol's Seat Unique Stadium.

Responding to Surrey's imposing first-innings 603, Gloucestershire reached the close on 443-2, thanks in large part to Dent's defiant knock of 207 not out, an innings spanning eight hours so far. The Bristolian shared a record-breaking opening stand of 296 with Marcus Harris, who raised an impressive 124, and then staged an unbroken third-wicket alliance of 147 with Miles Hammond, his fellow left-hander finishing undefeated on 75.

In the process, Dent passed the notable personal milestone of 10,000 first-class runs, and Gloucestershire attained maximum batting bonus points for the first time this season. They still trail by 160 and will need to summon further resistance on the final day, but any outcome other than a draw is now inconceivable.

It was a chastening day in the field for Surrey, who failed to bank even a single bonus point. Jordan Clark and Colin de Grandhomme shared the slim pickings on offer, yet in reality, only Reece Topley mustered the line and length required to threaten the hosts.

Newcomers to the First Division, Gloucestershire are fast gaining a reputation for dogged resistance in the face of adversity, having conceded significant first-innings deficits in previous matches against Northants, Yorkshire and Lancashire before staging spirited fightbacks on days three and four. Staring down the barrel of a third consecutive defeat when Surrey posted a mammoth 603, the underdogs once again dug deep to defy more illustrious opponents, Dent and Harris batting for five hours to at least avert the threat of following on.

Theirs was a record-breaking stand, the highest for any Gloucestershire wicket in matches against Surrey, surpassing the 285 made by Bev Lyon and Wally Hammond at The Oval in May 1928. They had already eclipsed the previous highest score for the first wicket in matches against Surrey, going past the 219 staged by Sadiq Mohammad and Andy Stovold at Bristol in 1975.

Following hard on the heels of their opening stand of 119, made in a losing cause against Lancashire at Old Trafford last week, these two served up additional defiance in spade-loads to frustrate Surrey after Gloucestershire resumed on 86 without loss.

It said a good deal about the benign state of the pitch that Surrey deployed just two slips for Dan Worrall and Reece Topley at the start of the day, and Gloucestershire's opening pair made serene progress, taking their alliance into three figures and both registering fifties during a morning session which yielded 129 runs. 

Dent was first to a hundred, reaching that landmark via 162 balls, cutting Will Jacks to third man for his 18th boundary. His 19th first-class hundred in all, it was his first since he posted 169 against Derbyshire at Derby in August 2019. 

Harris went to his second century in successive home matches for Gloucestershire in some style, pulling Topley to the mid-wicket boundary shortly after lunch. Dropped by Ollie Pope at slip off the bowling of Topley when on 111, the Australian eventually succumbed to temptation when flashing hard at a ball outside off stump from Colin de Grandhomme and being held by stand-in wicketkeeper Josh Blake, who had been called up overnight to replace the injured Jamie Smith.

Harris had batted for five hours, faced 209 balls, scored 18 boundaries and played his part in an adhesive opening stand that did much to subdue south London ambition. When Jordan Clark encouraged a slanting delivery to straighten up and knock back James Bracey's off stump soon afterwards, Surrey's players had a notable spring in their step, sensing an opportunity to make further in-roads now that one end had been opened up. After all, Gloucestershire still trailed by 306 runs and the second new ball was just a few overs away. 

Having negotiated a challenging initiation on a pitch that still offered something for those who bowled a full length, Miles Hammond quickly set about dispelling any lingering Gloucestershire insecurities, joining forces with the indomitable Dent to see off the new ball. Once able to play more freely again in the final hour, Dent cut Clark to the square leg boundary to reach 164 not out and bring up 10,000 first-class runs, the landmark being greeted by a smattering of applause from county aficionados within a sparse Saturday crowd.

Prevented from deploying Sam Curran as a bowler by a direct edict from the England management, Surrey were deprived of a potentially key option and, not surprisingly, their overworked seamers began to visibly tire in the final session. Dent and Hammond made the most of the situation, keeping the scoreboard ticking over to tap Surrey resolve and edge their side ever nearer to safety.

Dent went to 200 from 375 balls, cutting Jacks for his 27th four to become the first Gloucestershire player to score a double against Surrey since Zaheer Abbas achieved the feat way back in 1976.

Hammond reached 50 off 86 balls with 10 fours, but enjoyed a let-off on 65 when he gave Jacks the charge and Blake made a hash of an attempted stumping. But then it had been that kind of a day for Surrey.


Hampshire vs Lancashire, Ageas Bowl

Nick Gubbins scored twin centuries in an LV= Insurance County Championship match for the first time in his career as Hampshire set Lancashire 351 to win at the Ageas Bowl.

Left-handed batter Gubbins followed his innings rescuing 101 not out with an effortless 130 to give Hampshire a hefty lead on a pitch which had previously benefited the bowlers.

He joined forces with Ben Brown, who scored a high-quality 72, to put on 144 for the fifth wicket to grind down Lancashire.

Hampshire were eventually bowled out for 344, with the visitors reaching nine in six wicketless overs by close. 

Gubbins broke through in Middlesex’s championship-winning season in 2016, where he clattered 1,409 Division One runs, including four centuries (including a double against Lancashire). At that point, a Test career seemed a formality.

However, those expectations played on his mind, his average nose dived to 25 the following season and talk of international call-ups dried up. A change of scenery to Hampshire last summer has enacted a rebloom; with 769 runs in 2021 followed by a profitable spell in Zimbabwe over the winter. He already has 364 runs in the 2022 Championship averages.

That kind of form tends to turn heads, especially with a new Test captain and managing director looking at ways to stamp a freshness to the squad. Scoring a pair of centuries against England’s premium fast bowler won’t do any harm of upgrading from 27 England Lions appearances, either.

He spoke in 2019 about how he had matured and grown after the purple-patch pressures: “I like to think I’ve become better at dealing with things in life generally, be it talk of England or the boiler going in the house.” Those life lessons were put into action on the first morning when he was in the middle of Hampshire collapsing to 40 for five. Then, his unbeaten 101 kept Hampshire in the game.

Today, his century was more about putting his side in a position to win.

This was a better day for batting. The skies were blue and the ball was already 36 overs old. The caveat being James Anderson and his relentless control. His first six-over spell of the day saw four maidens and Liam Dawson’s wicket. He eventually recorded three for 36.

Gubbins was largely anonymous in his slow run building, although burst into life with two eye-catching cover drives. The first punishing a rare piece of width offered by Anderson, the latter taking him to a 120-ball fifty.

Gubbins and Brown are two recent signings under-pinning Hampshire’s chase for a first title since 1974; hungry having been unwanted by previous counties but with the records of the finest county players. They grew the lead in a risk-free fashion, making the most of an unresponsive ageing ball, totting up 144 runs together in the lazy spring afternoon sun.

Gubbins’ big moment came when he pushed Hasan Ali through the covers, with his 218 delivery. For a second the emotion appeared to swell as he gently punched the air with his head bowed, tapped his bat on the floor three times before turning around and almost collapsing into a hug with Brown. Only then did he take off his helmet and raise his bat to the dressing room for the 13th ton of his first-class career.

Brown reached 72 before the second new ball pinned him plumb in front, with Felix Organ following him back shortly after when not offering a shot to George Balderson. The lead past 300 before Gubbins was finally dismissed after 231 runs and 515 deliveries in the match when Danny Lamb trapped him on the crease. Keith Barker chipped in with 40 before scything to cover, James Fuller was bowled and Muhammad Abbas holed out to long-on to complete the innings.

 

Yorkshire vs Kent, Headingley

Harry Brook fell narrowly short of a maiden career double century before lunch on day three as Yorkshire edged towards victory in their LV= Insurance County Championship clash with Kent at Headingley.

Brook, the Division One’s second leading run-scorer behind unbeaten Kent opener Ben Compton, continued his super start to the summer by advancing from 131 overnight to 194 and taking his tally of runs to 512 in five innings this summer. 

Yorkshire were replying to 291. They started day three on 326 for five with a lead of 35 and were bowled out by mid-afternoon for a record 591 and with a lead of 280. 

Later in the day, Kent impressively resisted to close on 118 for two from 50 overs, giving them plenty of hope they can avoid a third defeat in four games to start 2022.

So far, the visitors have not needed to face Pakistan fast bowler Haris Rauf in their second innings given he is having a minor niggle in his left side assessed by the Yorkshire medical team.

And in-form Compton will be at the crease on 67 having taken his season’s tally to 534.

Tongues are starting to wag regarding 23-year-old Brook’s chances of soon winning Test selection.

Along with the likes of Tom Haines and Josh Bohannon, he is amongst a group of highly-rated young batters and was watched here by James Taylor, a national selector.

He has now scored at least fifty in every innings this summer, including another century at Gloucestershire two rounds ago, having had a memorable winter of T20 cricket which saw him make his international debut in January.

Brook hit two sixes and 21 boundaries in his 265-ball innings, ended shortly before lunch when he gloved a pull at Nathan Gilchrist behind down leg.

It was a tired looking shot to end his marathon 398-minute stay at the crease, and he was the third Yorkshire player to fall caught behind down leg following Adam Lyth and Dawid Malan on day two.

Brook, who cut and square drove a lot of his runs, shared partnerships of 269 for the fourth wicket with Malan on day two and 151 with Dom Bess for the sixth during the third morning.

Bess was also proactive on the way to 89, though sunk to his knees in disappointment when he fell short of a maiden century for the county.

He was caught at slip following a loose drive at Jack Leaning’s off-spin as Yorkshire slipped to 496 for seven early in the afternoon - a lead of 205.

By that time, the maximum of five batting bonus points had been secured. 

Young all-rounder Matthew Revis added a belligerent 53, including three sixes. It was his maiden first-class fifty and contributed to Yorkshire’s highest ever first-class total against Kent.

One of his sixes was slapped over cover after a ball from Leaning had slipped out of the Kent captain’s hand mid-delivery and landed wide of the cut strip.

Revis was the last man out for Yorkshire, caught high at cover off the left-arm spin of South African George Linde, who claimed each of the last three home wickets to fall.

Brilliant sunshine was replaced by an overcast sky after tea.

Kent lost their first wicket beforehand when Revis had Test opener Zak Crawley caught and bowled with a low full toss for five, the seamer hanging onto a sharp chance as the score fell to 18 for one in the 11th over.

First-innings centurion Daniel Bell-Drummond departed for only two after tea when he drove Steve Patterson low to cover (27 for two in the 18th).

Patterson had Compton dropped behind by Harry Duke on 46, while Leaning also offered a couple of sharp chances to George Hill and Thompson on the way to 31.

Yorkshire centurion Harry Brook said: 

“It’s really nice to be out there for some time, score some runs for the team and put a score on the board.

“My dad’s (David, for Burley-in-Wharfedale) highest score is 210, so I was aiming towards that. That was always in the back of my mind, wanting to get past him. Unfortunately today wasn’t the day.

“Absolutely (I think we still have the firepower to win without Haris Rauf).

“Bessy is going to play a big part in that. He is probably going to bowl for the majority of the game from one end now and hopefully get a bit out of the wicket.

“We dropped a couple of catches at the end, which might be vital. But that happens, and we have to move on and create more chances.”

On England: 

“To be honest with you a lot of people ask this question. I’m not thinking about it at all. I just want to try and score as many runs as I can for Yorkshire and what will be will be.

“I think I’ve looked towards bigger things in the past and it’s made me not perform as well as I could have. I’m just trying to stay in the moment at the minute.”

 

Kent overseas all-rounder George Linde said: 

“We’re pretty happy with what went on at the end. Jack and Compo, they did well with the bat. Hopefully, tomorrow, we can bat the day out. It is a pretty flat wicket. 

“I’ve just come back from injury, so I’m still trying to find my feet. I haven’t done much bowling before this game, which is a bit frustrating. But I do understand what I’m coming back from.

“I’ve never had a groin injury before, and it’s a little bit sore.

“I was happy (with my performance). I didn’t mind going for runs, I was just happy I got some overs under my belt. Hopefully next game that will go better and I can get in better rhythm.”

 

Division Two

Middlesex vs Leicestershire, Lord’s

Ben Mike was left stranded on 99 as his thrilling counter-attacking innings failed to save Leicestershire from defeat in three days at the hands of hosts Middlesex at Lord’s.

Nottinghamshire born Mike followed his four for 15 24 hours earlier with a magnificent display of hitting, beating his previous career-best of 74, only to run out of partners one short of a richly deserved century.

His efforts took the visitors to 272 second time around and ensured Middlesex, who were a bowler light due to a injury to Tom Helm, had to bat again.

However, Toby Roland-Jones’ three for 67 meant the hosts needed just 52 a target openers Mark Stoneman and Sam Robson chased down in just over 10 overs to seal a second LV = Insurance County Championship win of the season.

Sensing their hosts were understrength Wiann Mulder started aggressively, pulling a Roland-Jones loosener for four and driving the next ball to the cover fence. However,

Bamber ( two for 48), so impressive the previous evening, made the early breakthrough at the Nursery End, finding a touch of away movement which caused Sam Evans to edge low to Peter Handscomb at slip.

The 23-year-old deserved more from an opening spell where he beat the bat with monotonous regularity, but Mulder and wicketkeeper Harry Swindells survived not only that stint but Shaheen Shah Afridi’s opening salvo too. And when spin took over from one end, Mulder took toll of a rare loose ball from leg-spinner Luke Hollman to raise the 50-partnership.

Fate then smiled kindly on Middlesex as Roland-Jones returned to have an lbw shout against Swindells upheld when it seemed the ball was going over the top.

Mulder pressed on to reach 50 only to toss his wicket away soon after lunch hooking Afridi straight down the throat of Hollman at deep square.

His departure was the cue for Mike’s thrilling counter-offensive. Afridi bowled him some short stuff in retaliation for being on the receiving end of the same the night before, but the all-rounder promptly hooked him over the ropes at long leg. What started as by-play became an ongoing contest with only one winner, Mike flailing the Pakistani international over cover for six as the 50-stand with Ed Barnes came up in 39 balls, forcing Afridi out of the attack.

A punch through mid-on took him to 50  from 57 balls before a scare on 62 when Bamber got one between bat and pad which somehow missed the stumps.

Barnes (32) proved a great foil in a stand which reached 98, ensuring Middlesex would have to bat again, before he played too soon at one from Hollman and lobbed a catch to short mid-wicket.

Mike though plundered on, passing his previous best of 74 and pulling a short one from Roland-Jones for six as the visitors inched ahead.

At the other end Callum Parkinson, survived being struck by a return from the outfield, but  perished caught at slip off Roland-Jones and Chris Wright clubbed Hollman straight into the hands of mid-wicket with Mike two short of his century.

His mistake was to take a single, a decision he was to regret when last man Beuran Hendricks shouldered arms to Roland Jones who sent his off-stump cartwheeling out the ground, cruel luck on Mike after a magnificent innings.

Leicestershire head coach Paul Nixon said: "Benny Mike showed real fight, attitude and will to win. He believed in himself, he got in the battle and his sheer bloody-mindedness to try and get the 185-190 lead we spoke about last night was there.

"He was challenged about 10 days ago about his attitude, his bowling, his batting and his preparation. Now we've seen some reward for that, but that's one game. He has to go and do it again and do it again as good batsmen and good bowlers do.

"The reality is as a team we've played some poor cricket. We've been going after balls we shouldn't be going after when we're getting in. We're defending balls on sixth, seventh and eighth stump, hitting long hops to fielders that should be landing in the back of the stands. We've been nowhere near where we should be as first-class cricketers. 

"We haven't had what I consider to be our full-strength side out every game, but we are a squad and it's a squad game. We need to do the basics better for longer; it's as simple as that. First-class cricket is tight, disciplined, hard work, where you earn the right to build scores and get bowlers into their second and third spells. There's no hiding place in professional sport. We haven't been doing those things and we're getting punished."

 

 

Middlesex captain Peter Handscomb said:   "There is a lot to like at the moment. The last two games the ruthlessness of the team has been incredible and giving the opposition nothing.

The fact we've won the last two games in three days, pretty much only had to bat once and bowled the house down is very pleasing.

"I'm not going to pick a bowler today. As a unit they are doing a great job. We can see that because of the split of the wickets among them. They are bowling at different times and all having an impact. Ethan (Bamber) bowled very well today, but I'm not taking anything away from the other three either. 

"The team is playing really well as a unit. It does help having Shaheen Afridi coming in as the No 1 bowler in the world - that's lifts everyone. He brings something different that we don't have which is incredible.

"Last year some guys were still young in their careers having played under 10 first-class matches. This year we've got more time in their legs and a few older heads on young shoulders. They are starting to own their games and know what they can and can't do." 

Nottinghamshire vs Worcestershire, Trent Bridge

Division Two leaders Nottinghamshire completed a third win in four LV= Insurance County Championship matches with a day to spare despite Ed Barnard’s heroic 163 not out for Worcestershire.

Ben Duckett, who has a century and four fifties from his last five innings, top scored with 78 as Nottinghamshire overhauled a target of 233 to win by five wickets, with Joe Clarke posting his first half-century of the season and hitting the winning boundary off the last ball of the day.



Worcestershire had been bowled out for 339 in their second innings, with four wickets each for England’s Stuart Broad and last season’s leading Championship wicket-taker, Luke Fletcher.

Given they had been 32 for four, still 75 behind, when Barnard walked to the crease on Friday, it had been a remarkable fightback. But with Dillon Pennington unable to bowl because of injury, a Worcestershire attack already without last season’s leading wicket-taker Joe Leach had its work cut out to prevent a first defeat of the season.

It meant that Barnard’s marathon career-best, which spanned seven-and-a-half hours and contained 16 fours and a six, was ultimately in vain, exceptional innings though it was given the circumstances and the calibre of bowling he faced.

Barnard, 101 overnight as Worcestershire resumed on 225 for five, ran out of partners about 40 minutes after lunch following some enthralling cricket in which Broad again looked ready to return to Test duty.
 
He removed Ben Cox for 55 in his second over as the Worcestershire wicket-keeper nicked a rising delivery to his counterpart Tom Moores, ending a 142-run partnership for the sixth wicket.

Josh Baker fell leg before to Fletcher in the next over, but Nottinghamshire had to wait until the penultimate over of the morning for a further breakthrough after Barnard had left his previous best of 128 well behind him.  

Broad had Adam Finch caught behind off a thin edge with a full delivery but, but only after the 21-year-old - selected here after Leach withdrew due to illness - had picked up where Cox left off by offering resilient support to Barnard in another stubborn partnership, this one worth 79. Finch’s  contribution was a career-best 33.

The last two wickets fell to Fletcher, who bowled Charlie Morris with one that kept low, and Dane Paterson, who had Pennington well caught at second slip to give him 10 wickets in a match for the second time in his career following his career-best eight for 52 in the first innings.

With the pitch having flattened out, Worcestershire’s best hope of denying Nottinghamshire was to take a clutch of wickets with the new ball and they started well when Morris struck with his fourth delivery as Ben Slater was caught low down at first slip.

Duckett raced to a half-century in 51 balls, dishing out some ruthless treatment to 18-year-old Baker with five boundaries in the left-arm spinner’s first two overs.

Baker, to his credit, was unfazed and recovered to bowl nicely, given a fillip when Barnard, showing no hint of fatigue, produced a beauty to bowl Hameed for 24.

Duckett, who hit 12 boundaries, flashed at one from Morris and was caught behind, but Clarke looked in good touch from the outset.

He lost Lyndon James as a partner when the irrepressible Barnard took an outrageous catch at slip from a cleanly hit reverse sweep off Baker, Steven Mullaney was caught at deep cover but a positive approach paid off for Tom Moores, who hit 28 from 30 balls before Clarke drove Baker through midwicket to win the contest with his ninth boundary.

Nottinghamshire’s Joe Clarke, who hit the winning runs, said:

“I haven’t contributed to a win yet and it was nice to be there at the end to hit the winning runs.  I’ve felt in good rhythm all season without going on to get a score.

“Credit to Ben Duckett for the way he is playing, he is in some serious form. He really accelerated that chase with 70-odd off 70 balls and he was disappointed not to be walking off with me at the end. And the way Dane Paterson bowled on the first day - him and James (Pattinson), the two overseas, are such good lads in the dressing room, we’re very lucky to have them.

“We’ve got a week off and to be sitting top of the table is good. We looked at the first part of the season as a mini-series and we’ve won that series 3-1. We had a blip here against Glamorgan but we have bounced back so well with two good wins against teams we expect to be around us at the end of the season.

“The city is buzzing at the moment with Forest going so well and we’re hoping to follow what they are doing across the road and have that winning mentality.”

 

Worcestershire head coach Alex Gidman said:

“We are a bit raw at the moment, disappointed to be on the wrong end of the result from a really good game with great skills on show, but the character and resilience we have shown at times has been unbelievable.

“I’m really delighted with so much of the game and just gutted for the guys that we couldn’t do enough at certain times to get ourselves in an even better position.

“Ed Barnard’s innings was one of the finest I’ve seen. It was outstanding, with great discipline, great shot selection, chanceless I think and full credit to him.  He has put the hard yards in, put a lot of work in on his batting.

“Dillon Pennington picked up a niggle in the first innings with Joe (Leach) missing as well but these things happen occasionally and it was tough without the extra bowler for sure. But it was good to have Josh (Baker) available to give us an out-and-out spin option. It was a real tough challenge for him but he will have learned a lot from the last three days.”

Derbyshire vs Glamorgan, The Incora County Ground

Derbyshire’s Shan Masood fell agonisingly short of a world record on the third day of the LV=Insurance County Championship match against Glamorgan at Derby.

The Pakistan opener was out for 42, failing by three to beat the most first-class runs in April  set by Nick Compton who scored 715 for Somerset in 2012.

Marnus Labuschagne had earlier scored 130 from 199 balls out of Glamorgan’s 387 with Sri Lankan fast bowler Suranga Lakmal taking 5 for 82.

Derbyshire wiped out the slender deficit of 19 and with Wayne Madsen cruising to an unbeaten 58, they closed on 170 for 2, a lead of 151.

For a while, it looked doubtful if Masood would even get the chance to break the record as Labuschagne and nightwatchman Timm van der Gugten batted through the first 20 overs of the day.

Derbyshire almost broke through early but Madsen at second slip failed to take a tough low catch when van der Gugten on nine edged Lakmal.

Labuschagne was beaten a couple of times by Ryan Sidebottom but the Australian played some sublime drives as he moved to his sixth hundred for Glamorgan from 137 balls 

The stand was worth 82 from 22 overs when van der Gugten tried to hit leg-spinner Mattie McKiernan over the top but failed to clear long on.

Glamorgan’s prospects of a substantial lead disappeared with the second new ball which Lakmal and Conners used skillfully to slow the scoring rate and build pressure.

Chris Cooke was lbw playing back to Conners and although Tom Cullen was dropped second ball at first slip, he played on to Lakmal in the second over after lunch.

Michael Neser got a leading edge, Lakmal trapped Labuschagne lbw and after some firm blows from the last wicket pair, all eyes were on Masood.

He timed the ball effortlessly from the start, threading drives and clips off his legs through gaps to close in on Compton’s landmark.

The last over before tea began with Masood needing three runs to enter the record books but the first ball seamed away and lifted to take his outside edge and Cooke made no mistake.

Even so, Masood’s aggregate of 713 in five Championship innings is a remarkable statistic and he now has two more matches to get to the coveted milestone of 1,000 runs before the end of May.

With Masood back in the pavilion, it was now a question of how far ahead Derbyshire could get before stumps and Madsen came out intent on taking the attack to the bowlers.

James Harris replaced van der Gugten, who pulled up and left the field, and had Billy Godleman caught behind but was then savaged by Madsen who hit four boundaries in the over which cost 20.

Glamorgan restored a measure of control but Madsen reached his fifth consecutive score of 50 or more when he cut Neser for his seventh four.

With Brooke Guest, he has so far added 97 for the third wicket but with rain forecast on the final day, it will take something dramatic for either side to force victory.

 

Sussex vs Durham, The 1st Central County Ground

An unbroken opening stand of 169 between Alex Lees and Sean Dickson gave Durham an excellent chance of saving their LV= Insurance County Championship match  against Sussex at Hove after they had conceded a first innings lead of 315.

Dickson completed his century just before the close, off 137 balls with 15 fours, while the more subdued Lees finished with 50 not out.  Earlier, Sussex had continued to dominate their fixture against one of the favourites for promotion as their overseas stars Cheteshwar Pujara and Mohammad Rizwaz put on 154 for the sixth wicket.  Pujara scored 203, his second double century in three matches – and there was another hundred in the other match – while Rizwan found his form on his home debut with an innings of 79 as Sussex piled on 538.

 There are enough cracks on the pitch to encourage the Sussex spinners on the final day.  But Durham, who are 146 runs behind, feel they have a good chance of a fighting draw on what is still a good surface.

 In the first session Sussex scored 128 runs without losing a wicket, which suggests the Durham bowling was poor.  But Durham bowled well in discouraging conditions against two world class batsmen, and there was something heroic about the way Matthew Potts continued to generate pace and bounce bowling downhill from the Cromwell Road end.

The game changed shape dramatically after lunch, when Sussex lost five wickets for 34 runs in nine overs as the slow left-armer Liam Trevaskis followed his 88 runs with figures of five for 128.

That still gave Sussex a huge first innings advantage.  But the Durham openers batted superbly in the final session to give their side hope.

The day started with Sussex on 362 for five, with Pujara 128 not out and Rizwan unbeaten on five.  Durham probably suspected they were in for a hard time when Pujara rocked onto the back foot and punched the first ball of the morning for four.  The India Test batsman scored just eight runs in the opening 45 minutes and  it was Rizwan who was the busier of the two batsmen, scoring 36 by the time the pair had put in fifty.  There were scares.  Rizwan was almost run out by Dickson at point when he was 36 and Pujara, on 140, was close to being caught at first slip.  But, mostly, it was sublime batting from the two  star batsmen who proved their true worth in a young and depleted Sussex side.

At lunch – which came ten minutes later than scheduled because 13 overs had been missed on the second day -  Sussex had reached 490 for five, a lead of 267, with Pujara 186 and Rizwan 74.  The 150 partnership, which coincided with the side reaching 500, came off 149 balls but four runs later Rizwan, pulling hard against Matt Salisbury, was brilliantly caught by Trevaskis at deep square-leg.

Delray Rawlins, badly in need of runs, got off the mark with a slogged six over midwicket but, pulling, was bowled for 12.  Two overs later Pujara, venturing down the wicket to Trevaskis, was stumped.  He had faced 334 balls and struck 24 fours.  It didn’t last much longer.  Henry Crocombe was caught at slip third ball and George Burrow was lbw to the second delivery he received. But the last session belonged to Durham.

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