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LV= INSURANCE COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND 12 Day 1: All the Match Scores, Reports and Scorecards July 11th 2021

COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP
COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP
©Cricket World / John Mallett
 

LV= INSURANCE COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND 12 Day 1: All the Match Scores, Reports and Scorecards July 11th  2021

Live Scores and Stats LV= County Championship Round 12

 

July 11th , Sunday – July 14th , Wednesday


Kent vs Sussex, Group 3 Kent County Cricket Ground, Beckenham 11:00 AM

Sussex reduced a Kent side hobbled by a COVID scare to 69 for five on day one of their LV= Insurance County Championship match at Canterbury, leaving them 112 behind the visitors’ first innings score of 181.  

Jamie Atkins took three for 21 and Ollie Robinson two for 21, as Kent’s makeshift top order failed to build on their best red-ball bowling display of the season. 19-year-old debutant Jas Singh took four for 51 and Harry Podmore three for 49, while James Coles was Sussex’s top scorer with 36.  

Singh was only selected after a positive PCR test forced 14 members of Kent’s first-team squad into isolation. 

Kent’s preparations for Canterbury Week were thrown into chaos when an unidentified member of the Vitality Blast side that beat Surrey on Friday tested positive for COVID. As his team mates were all identified as close contacts, Heino Kuhn was named captain of an improvised eleven that included five debutants: Singh, Joe Gordon, Harry Finch, Dan Lincoln and Harry Houillon, joined regular first-teamers Harry Podmore, Matt Quinn, Nathan Gilchrist and Marcus O’Riordan, while Hamid Qadri was selected for the first time this season. 

The start was delayed until noon to allow Kent to register their new players and after winning the toss and choosing to bowl they entered the arena to warm applause. 

Sussex’s openers Ali Orr and Tom Haines made 50 without loss, but the former cut Singh and was brilliantly caught by O’Riordan for 21. 

Singh then had Haines caught for 25 in his next over, held by Kuhn at first slip after the ball was parried by Finch, leaving Sussex on 51 for two at lunch. 

Gilchrist trapped Harrison Ward for four and Travis Head then drove Singh to Kuhn for 12. Singh claimed his fourth wicket when he had Oliver Carter caught behind for 32, making him Houillon’s maiden first-class victim. 

Qadri got Coles lbw with his first ball, Gilchrist had Ibrahim caught behind for six and Podmore swept away the tail, getting Ollie Robinson caught behind for 21 before trapping Sean Hunt lbw and bowling Jamie Atkins, both for nought. 

However, Kent’s batsmen struggled to emulate the bowlers’ heroics. 

Gordon was lbw to Robinson for eight, before Atkins had O’Riordan lbw for 18. The latter then bowled Kuhn for eight and Lincoln for nought. Robinson had Houillon lbw for a duck before bad light stopped play at 6.50pm, with Finch 24 not out and Podmore unbeaten on three.

Earlier, preparations for Kent’s final LV= County Championship Group C game with Sussex were thrown into chaos on Sunday morning, after a positive COVID-19 PCR test forced 14 members of the hosts’ first-team squad into isolation. 

An unidentified member of the Kent Spitfires Vitality Blast side that beat Surrey on Friday night tested positive on Saturday and as his team mates were all identified as close contacts, club officials were left scrambling to assemble a scratch squad in time for Sunday’s game. 

Director of Cricket Paul Downton and Head Coach Matt Walker worked through the night to assemble a mixture of red-ball specialists and second-teamers and the start was delayed until 12 noon to allow multiple players to be registered in time. 

Heino Kuhn was named captain of an eleven that included first-teamers Harry Podmore, Matt Quinn, Nathan Gilchrist and Marcus O’Riordan. 

Kent CEO, Simon Storey, said: “With the emergence of the Delta variant and recent release in lock down restrictions, the Club has been conscious of the increased possibility of an outbreak.”  

“Overnight, the Club has worked swiftly to identify a replacement squad that will be ready to take on Sussex in the much-anticipated Canterbury Cricket Week, and will also be preparing for the final two matches of the group stages of the Vitality Blast, with a quarter-final berth already secured.” 

Kent's head coach Matt Walker said:  "I think actually after the England situation happened we spoke to the group at Lancashire to take a step back, to go back to where we were last year at the start of the season, when COVID was around us, to limit their access to people outside the group, to avoid busy areas like pubs, bars, coffee houses and just make sure we’re doing everything we can to be careful. Ironically a few days later we had our first case. 

“The results came back to us at 7 last night. Obviously it turned out to be a positive test and the mad scramble started to happen, it was all hands on deck from everyone involved. We were prepared in a way that if that test was positive, we had a few players on standby which made things a little bit easier. Trying to organise everything logistically was a bit of a headache, but we got there in the end and managed to get a game on. 

“Fortunately half the side weren’t at The Oval so that gave you half a team. We didn’t want to cancel the game, that’s for sure. As much as it was going to be a challenge to get 11 players we felt we could do it. It’s Canterbury week, it’s festival week and I think we had a duty to put a team together. It was late to bed, that’s for sure. The phone didn’t stop ringing and pinging with texts until midnight, but as soon as the phone went off I went to sleep very quickly! For all the downside of having a squad isolated you get a chance to see what these young players can do.” 

Sussex coach Ian Salisbury said: "I first got wind of it last night about 10pm. We witnessed it last week, losing eight players, so I've got empathy for Kent, we've all got to be careful. It can upset your plans but also you've got to play what's in front of you. It's an absolute belter of a wicket and we played some poor shots to be fair. We've got a few youngsters playing their first games, they can make mistakes, but there'll be a few batters disappointed in how they got out.",

 Glamorgan vs Northamptonshire, Group 3 Sophia Gardens, Cardiff 11:00 AM


Honours were pretty even on Day 1 of the final round of games in the LV= Insurance County Championship Division 3 Group stage match at Sophia Gardens when rain stopped play 64 minutes into the afternoon session.

The predicted rain finally arrived after 44.5 overs with Northants 128-4. The Glamorgan seamers picked up four wickets, with Timm (correct) van der Gugten leading the way with 3-35 from 13 his overs.

Northants won the toss and decided to bat despite the thick cloud covering overhead. Left handers Ricardo Vasconcelos and Emilio Gay opened the innings and had to face an opening pace barrage from Glamorgan’s Aussie duo of Michael Neser and Michael Hogan.

Skipper Vasconcelos sent the first ball from Neser, playing his last championship game of the season before returning to Australia having signed a new two-year deal with the Welsh county, to the boundary. He did the same to Dan Douthwaite’s first ball in the 13th over as the second change bowler, taking Northants past the 30 run mark in the opening hour.

Northants had won the opening Group 3 clash by seven wickets at home and both teams came into the game knowing that whatever the outcome they would both be moving into Division Two of the re-vamped County Championship.

Timm van der Gugten finally got the breakthrough for the home side in the 14th over when he got Gay caught behind by skipper Chris Cooke the ball after the Northants opener had edged a ball through the slips for four. That made it 40-1 with Gay departing for 22.

Van der Gugten then removed Vasconcelos, caught at short mid-wicket by Kiran Carlson, to make it 55-2 in the 20th over. The Northants skipper had just gone through 700 championship runs for the season on his way to 25, while the bowler ended his super seven over spell in the opening session with 2-18.

Charlie Thurston (16 no) and Rob Keogh (12 no) successfully steered the visitors through to lunch and they resumed the second session on 81-2.

Van der Gugten took up where he left off before lunch by getting Keogh caught at first slip by Billy Root with the eighth ball after the resumption. Neser continued the home side’s great start to the afternoon session when he trapped Luke Proctor lbw for three going around the wicket to the left handed.

When the rain arrived, Thurston had moved on to 36 in 31 overs at the crease, his highest championship score of the season, and Saif Zaib had scored 16. Play was called off for the day at 4.30pm after continuous rain.

Glamorgan’s chief wicket taker on the opening day, Timm van der Gugten (3-35 from 13 overs), said it was important that the home county’s seamers start the second day well to stop Northants building on their overnight total of 128-4.

“We are maybe slightly ahead of the game. It’s going to be a pretty good wicket and if you bowl well there is something there for you, but if you bat well there are definitely opportunities to score.

“We will have to come out and bowl well tomorrow morning because their batters could get on a roll and get away from us.

“I’m pretty happy with the way the ball is coming out for me at the moment especially in the four-day stuff. I’m trying to keep it pretty simple and try to increase my consistency of length and then let the wicket and the ball do the rest.

“I’ve been lucky to take a few wickets in the last few games, but I think we’ve all bowled pretty well. It is going my way at the moment and I’m trying to roll with it.

“We were potentially going to bowl first in the conditions. But it is a used wicket that is playing quite nicely. If you can get yourself in there are runs to be had.

“We’re going through with Northants so as many points as we can get to take through with us into Division 2 will be great.”

-

 Surrey vs Somerset, Group 2 Kennington Oval, London 11:00 AM

A fascinating first day, on a pitch expected to take more spin as the game progresses, saw Somerset’s James Hildreth battle to 107 in a hard-fought 280 for 6 against Surrey at the Kia Oval.

It was Hildreth’s 47th first-class hundred and he was well supported in a fourth wicket stand of 144 in 50 overs by Lewis Goldsworthy, whose gritty three-hour 48 occupied 145 balls.

Hildreth, acting captain in the injury absence of Tom Abell, won an important toss before Somerset set out towards what they hope will be a match-defining first innings total in the final Group 2 fixture before qualification for the end-of-season divisional finale that will decide who wins this year’s LV= Insurance County Championship title.

Somerset must at worst draw here to make sure of Division One status in August and September, while Surrey began the game 22 points behind group leaders Somerset and 17 points adrift of second-placed Gloucestershire (the top two qualify for Division One) and had only a mathematical chance of finishing second.

Indian Test off spinner Ravi Ashwin, signed for this game only as an overseas player replacement for injured New Zealand fast bowler Kyle Jamieson, bowled the first over of the match at the start of a five-over new ball spell and finished with 1 for 70 from 28 overs.

Surrey, indeed, fielded three frontline spinners with off spinner Amar Virdi and slow left-armer Dan Moriarty also sharing 37 overs, while Somerset have England’s Jack Leach in their ranks. But only the odd ball spun markedly on a sluggish surface as Hildreth’s determined partnership with Goldsworthy shaped the opening day.

Surrey, already below-strength due to England one-day calls and injuries to Ollie Pope and Ben Foakes, were further handicapped by an injury suffered in the field by former Somerset fast bowler Jamie Overton and a shoulder problem which limited all-rounder Rikki Clarke to just a spell with the second new ball.

Jordan Clark, though, made an early breakthrough when he bowled Devon Conway for 21 – the New Zealand Test opener inside-edging an attempted drive – and Somerset were an unconvincing 113 for three 20 minutes after lunch after Steven Davies, lbw to Virdi’s second ball, and Tom Lammonby, who shouldered arms to Ashwin’s arm ball and was bowled off stump, had both departed for well-made 42s. Lammonby did once smash a Virdi full toss for six but otherwise it was predominantly attritional cricket throughout.

Hildreth, who hit 13 fours from 211 balls and cut and swept the spinners with excellent judgement, dug deep before an inswinger from the wholehearted Clark took out his off stump as he played no shot 10 minutes from the close.

Goldsworthy and George Bartlett (2) had by then also gone to the second new ball, strangled down the legside by Clark and leg-before to Clarke respectively.

Somerset head coach Jason Kerr said: “It is obviously a used surface so there was a lot of anticipation around the toss but you still have to bat well first up and it was an outstanding innings today from James Hildreth. Both he and several others assessed the conditions very quickly and batted in the right manner to put us in what is a strong position, especially with two good players [Roelof van der Merwe and Ben Green] still at the crease for tomorrow morning.

“I thought Lewis Goldsworthy showed immense maturity in that partnership with ‘Hildy’ and his 48 was a brilliant effort by someone who is still in the infancy of his career. In his debut season he has already had opportunities across different formats and has shown he can play under pressure as well as having batting skills. Surrey came back well towards the end of the day with the second new ball and perhaps it is a pitch where they could have used their quicker bowlers a bit more.”

Surrey all-rounder Jordan Clark, who ended the day with 3 for 55 from 21 overs, said: “We stuck at it really well on what is quite a slow pitch, keeping them to 280 in the day and picking up a few wickets near the end. Ideally it could have spun a bit more today but it is still not the worst pitch to bowl on so we just need to bowl well again in the morning and then concentrate on batting well in our first innings.

“The ball came out quite nicely for me and I am enjoying the chance to bowl with the new ball. It’s great to have Ravi Ashwin with us for this match. Our other spinners can certainly pick his brains, he’s obviously a world-class bowler and hopefully we can see him in action with the ball spinning a bit more later in the game!”

 


Middlesex vs Leicestershire, Group 2 Merchant Taylors' School Ground, Northwood 11:00 AM


SAM Robson’s first century since the season’s opening day gave Middlesex the early advantage in their LV= Insurance County Championship clash with Leicestershire at Merchant Taylors’ School.

After acting captain Tim Murtagh won the toss, the former England opener struck 13 fours in his unbeaten 138, sharing half century stands with Josh De Caires, Stephen Eskinazi and Daryl Mitchell as the hosts reached 280-3 before bad light ended play three overs ahead of the scheduled close.

Ben Mike, Ed Barnes and Abidine Sakande took a wicket apiece for the visitors.

Robson was positive from the outset getting well forward in defence against the seamers. Boundaries though were few and far between, a straight drive off Sakande a rare exception.

At the other end De Caires, in only his second game for the hosts survived a bang on the helmet as he and Robson raised 50 for the first wicket, only the second time a Middlesex opening pair had managed the feat all season.

The stand reached 73 before De Caires chopped a short one from Ben Mike into his stumps, part of an eventful spell for the seamer which included an official warning for running on the pitch.

Robson’s 50 came soon afterwards from 72 balls with four fours and he and Eskinazi prospered either side of lunch despite some miserly bowling from Will Davies and Callum Parkinson.

The 50 partnership was raised  before fate took a hand and Eskinazi pulled up after taking a sharp single and had to retire injured.

Max Holden, recalled to the first X1 in the wake of skipper Peter Hanscomb’s positive Covid test, survived an early caught behind shout to hit some stylish boundaries. However, he failed to make the most of being dropped at second slip by Marcus Harris off Barnes, edging the same bowler through to wicketkeeper Josh Inglis shortly afterwards.

Robson though continued unperturbed, cutting Sakande to the point boundary to reach his century from 172 balls on the stroke of tea.

The centurion rode his luck a little in the final session, flashing a couple through the slips and surviving a confident appeal for lbw from Davies.

But New Zealand international Mitchell played with increasing assurance for his 38 and it was a shock when he drove Sakande to Harry Swindells with the pair just shy of a century stand.


Acting Middlesex captain Tim Murtagh said: "It was an easy game for me wasn't it. I won the toss, the boys batted really well, but it is a massive honour for me to captain the side. Stuart (Law) asked me yesterday and it was something I was willing to do straight away. 

"I thought the batsmen applied themselves even during the opening partnership when things were a bit tricky this morning, both Sam (Robson) and Josh showed really good application.

"Batting throughout the whole day is a massive effort, so Robbo has set us up really well there and set us up with a really good platform to kick on tomorrow."

Leicestershire seamer Abidine Sakande on his first-class debut for the county said: "Ideally we would have liked a few more wickets down. 

Over the course of the day we didn't get much luck and it's a decent wicket.

"We need to really  turn up tomorrow morning, where if we get a couple more wickets down we'll really be in the game.

"I'm just happy to be back in the first-class arena to be honest.

"You never know in first-class cricket when in a spell something could happen for you, so I didn't let the scoreboard stop me being happy to be back out on the pitch."



Gloucestershire vs Hampshire, Group 2 College Ground, Cheltenham 11:00 AM


Gloucestershire and Hampshire played out an even first day in their winner-takes-all contest at Cheltenham with the home side making 214 for six before rain took out 30 overs.

Having won the toss, five of Gloucestershire’s top six got starts but none of could make a significant score as Hampshire chipped away.

Miles Hammond and George Scott shared 61 for the opening wicket but the innings then stuttered to 173 for six before Jack Taylor, with 34 not out, and Ollie Price, unbeaten on 18, came together. 

The rain arrived at a bad time with their partnership making good progress, taking Gloucestershire into bonus-point territory.

The hosts elected to bat in front of a good crowd - this being the only weekend cricket of the festival - and after an hour’s play, the mood had brightened further as Hammond and Scott delivered an excellent start, each making 31. 

Hammond, in good form, drove Kyle Abbott either side of point, added another smart driven boundary off Brad Wheal before pulling him, via an edge, over the slips cordon, albeit off a no ball.

Scott flicked two boundaries off his legs and angled Keith Barker off the back foot wide of third man. His 31 was his highest score of the season, in his fourth match, but he was trapped lbw by Colin de Grandhomme.

The New Zealander struck again with one that held its line a fraction to have Hammond caught behind.

In between dismissals, Wheal got one to go away from James Bracey and bowled him for a seven-ball duck. Gloucestershire lost three for 11 in 33 balls and the fine start was undone. 

Hampshire were then firmly on top as Abbott nipped one back to trap Tom Lace lbw for 19 to leave the home side 104 for four

Ryan Higgins played with customary vim, driving and flicking Mason Crane for boundaries but totally misread the flight of a full delivery and drove over the top of it to be bowled for 25 from 24 balls.

The pattern continued as Glenn Phillips hoisted Crane over long-on and picked up a ball not that short from Baker over midwicket for sixes but a flat-footed drive at Wheal produced an edge to slip for 47.

The innings was slipping away but Taylor and Price brought up one batting point and the chance of at least another on day two.

Brad Wheal said: “I think in general it’s a quick-scoring ground so we’ve done well.

 “We’re happy to take those wickets to put them under some pressure.

 “The boys worked hard to build pressure and build dots.”


Yorkshire vs Lancashire, Group 3 North Marine Road Ground, Scarborough 11:00 AM

Keaton Jennings became the 13th Lancashire player to score two Roses first-class centuries in a season as the visitors enjoyed a dominant opening day at Emerald Headingley.

The England fringe opener shared 163 for the first wicket with Alex Davies, who made a season’s best 84, as the Red Rose called Yorkshire’s decision to bowl first into question by closing day one of this LV= Insurance County Championship fixture on 273 for two from 96 overs.  

Steve Patterson won his ninth toss in 10 Championship games under an overcast sky. But Jennings and Davies survived early swing before prospering in otherwise excellent batting conditions.

Jennings scored 132 off 253 balls with 15 fours and a six, following his 114 in May’s victory at Emirates Old Trafford.

Lancashire are bidding for a head start in the late season top group.

Both counties have already guaranteed qualification for the six-team group that fights it out for the Championship Bob Willis Trophy titles.

With only four games played, however, it means you do not play the team you have advanced with from this initial group phase. Instead, half the aggregate points in the two fixtures are carried forwards.

In beating Yorkshire in May, the Red Rose claimed 22 points to the White Rose’s one. And similar dominance here is possible.

Opening duo Ben Coad and Dom Leech were unlucky early on, but the hosts otherwise lacked potency.

Davies survived a huge caught behind appeal on nought from Leech, on Championship debut having played in last season’s Bob Willis Trophy.

But he and Jennings settled and looked very comfortable.

Jennings was strong down the ground and reached his 20th career first-class century off 213 balls shortly after tea. He also went beyond 8,000 career runs.

Davies was strong through the covers and midwicket as he posted his sixth Championship fifty of the season. This was his best score.

He was lbw to Jordan Thompson as the bustling seamer made the breakthrough in the 57th over.

Lancashire’s batting resembled their approach in the first game at Old Trafford when they posted 509-9 declared and won by an innings.

They ground Yorkshire down, though Jennings lofted Dom Bess for six down the ground shortly after tea to move into the nineties and later hit four fours in a seven-ball spell against Leech with the new ball.

He then chipped a return catch to Thompson - 256 for two in the 86th. Luke Wells finished unbeaten on 35.

Yorkshire bowling coach Rich Pyrah said: “I think Patto (Steve Patterson) was set on batting, and then the clouds came in this morning just before the toss.

“Along with chatting to a few senior lads, he changed his mind with five minutes to go.He thought we had a chance to bowl them out.

“There was enough in the pitch, and that first hour of play I thought we bowled really well. We just didn’t get the nicks we deserved.

“I thought they played it really well. 

“As you know, at Headingley, once you get beyond the new ball it gets a bit slower and the ball gets softer and it’s a good time to bat.

“We didn’t capitalise on that first hour, and it’s cost us today.”

 

Lancashire centurion Keaton Jennings said:  "To be 270-2 at the end of the day's play is a really good effort, especially after being put in. 

"But the next 14 or 15 overs tomorrow are crucial - get through to the next bonus point, put on a really big score and make ourselves tough to beat.

"Any runs against Yorkshire are always really good fun. To do it at Headingley is even more fun. I'm really pleased to get us in a position where we can kick on and get maybe 500.

"I'm happy with my score, but I'm more pleased with the way the team's gone about it in a vital clash with half your points in this round carried through.

"We would have batted first (had we won the toss) because it looked a good surface to bat on. But it was a close call."


Worcestershire vs Warwickshire, Group 1 New Road, Worcester 11:00 AM

Pieter Malan struck his maiden century for Warwickshire on the opening day of the LV=Insurance County Championship derby with Worcestershire at New Road.

The South African and England opener Dominic Sibley laid the foundations for the visitors to post a substantial total in the battle to finish in the Group 1 top two with a second wicket stand of 220.

Malan arrived in England in late April with an average above 40 in all formats of the game and has experienced a challenging time in early season English conditions with 121 runs in eight previous Championship innings.

But he was rarely troubled in completing a 151 ball hundred – his 35th in first class cricket – after Warwickshire captain Will Rhodes had opted to bat on a used pitch.

Worcestershire fought back with three wickets in quick succession, including Malan (141) and Sibley (80), and there was time for 17-year-old debutant spinner Josh Baker to claim a first wicket before an early close at 245-4 from 77.2 overs.

Worcestershire handed a Championship debut to Ish Sodhi while Jake Lintott made his first class debut for the visitors.

Worcestershire captain Joe Leach dismissed Rob Yates lbw in the first over without a run on the board.

Malan on five edged a Leach delivery just short of Tom Fell at first slip but otherwise he and Sibley experienced few alarms.

Malan lofted Leach for six over mid-wicket and showed his liking for the square cut when twice collecting boundaries in an over from Leach and then Ed Barnard.

Baker was brought into the attack for the 11th over and looked unfazed during an initial spell of 6-0-21-0.

Sibley had an escape on 24 when he edged a delivery from Adam Finch but Daryl Mitchell at second slip was unable to hold onto the low chance away to his left.

Malan brought up his half century off 73 balls with a cover drive off Sodhi for his seventh four.

There was the rare sight of Worcestershire using three spinners before lunch in Baker, Sodhi and Brett D’Oliveira but there was little encouragement in the pitch.

Malan on 80 survived a confident lbw shout against Leach but he looked composed and a cut for four off Finch took him to 99 before he reached three figures with a single off his next ball.

The Worcestershire attack continued to probe away on a wicket of good pace and were rewarded with two wickets in two overs at the start of the post tea session.

Malan on 141 went to pull a delivery from Sodhi but the ball ballooned up to Mitchell who took a comfortable catch at slip.

Finch gained some deserved reward in the next over as Sodhi, 80, tried to leg glance the paceman but edged through to keeper Ben Cox.

Then came Baker’s moment of glory as Sam Hain (11) went back to an arm ball and was lbw immediately before rain halted proceedings.

Worcestershire’s 17-year-old spinner Josh Baker, who claimed the wicket of Sam Hain on his debut, said: “I got told yesterday by Joe Leach (Club Captain) that I was playing.

“I made sure I went to bed early last night but I didn’t get that much sleep – about six hours – but it was good nerves!

“It was nice to have an early bowl today, it filled me with confidence.

“I was glad that I landed all of the first over on the strip, not full-bungers. I was really happy with how it came out today.

“Not look fazed? No, I think that is key, just trying to do my job, do the basics well, and just enjoy it really.

“I didn’t really feel out of my depth which is a good thing, I guess.”

--

Warwickshire century-maker, Pieter Malan, said: “I was told it’s a bit of a derby game and it’s always nice to contribute in games like that.

“You need a bit of luck with batting, you need a few things to go your way, and if you do the right things enough times, the game will pay you back over a period of time.

“I sort of tried to believe in that and it paid off today.

“It was disappointing firstly myself getting out and then losing a few more wickets.

“But I think we are in a good position to potentially score another 150 runs or so and then put them under pressure 

-

Durham vs Nottinghamshire, Group 1 Riverside Ground, Chester-le-Street 11:00 AM


Nottinghamshire made a solid start to their LV= Insurance County Championship clash against Durham, finishing day one 312 for nine after being inserted by the hosts at Emirates Riverside.

Ben Slater and Liam Patterson-White scored half-centuries, while Joe Clarke added 48 for the visitors. They showed great determination at the crease and battled their way to good score on the opening day amid fine precise bowling from the home side.

Chris Rushworth and Ben Raine led the way for Durham, taking three wickets apiece and Matt Salisbury added a couple, but Scott Borthwick's men were not able to inflict the damage they would have hoped after opting to bowl on home soil.

Rushworth marked his 35th birthday with the wicket of Haseeb Hameed, clean bowling the opener for 12. Potts bowled well in the morning session without luck as he beat the bat of Slater on several occasions. The visitors remained stoic at the crease and brought up fifty in the 23rd over.

However, Ben Compton's 54-ball innings came to an end before lunch as Rushworth notched his second wicket finding the outside edge, allowing Borthwick to claim a low catch at second slip

Slater battled hard amid impressive bowling for the hosts. He manoeuvred his way to fifty, clipping Rushworth off his legs to the fence to reach the milestone from 106 deliveries.

The opener combined with Joe Clarke to defy the Durham bowlers, putting on a stand of fifty from 82 balls in the afternoon session. Durham persisted on a line and length, and Raine earned his reward to dismiss Slater for 60, removing his middle stump to secure the first bonus point of the game.

Clarke appeared to be on course for his sixth fifty of the season, only to fall two short of the mark, chopping a wide Salisbury delivery on to his stumps. Raine then made further inroads to bowl Lydon James, giving the hosts an opening to press into the Notts lower order.

Steven Mullaney and Patterson-White halted their progress and countered to guide the visitors past the 200-run mark and their first bonus point. Mullaney played a loose drive to gift his wicket to Raine, while Rushworth pinned Joey Evison lbw to keep the visitors in check.

Sunderland-born Patterson-White kept the score moving past 250 and notched his second Championship fifty of the term. He finished the day unbeaten on 66 taking his team to their third batting point and boasting a strong platform in the contest.

Durham's Ben Raine said: "Absolutely, I would say it was honours even. You tend to think of the Riverside as a low-scoring ground, but this is a decent wicket. It's not far away from the wicket that we played against Derbyshire. It is quite a slow pitch. There's a little bit out there for the bowlers, but not quite as much as we were hoping for this morning. We had to bowl first to try to get the most out of it. So I would say the day was pretty even. The short boundaries have been quite frustrating as a bowler, but it's part of the game. We're trying to create a game where there are a lot of runs. Hopefully it helps us when we bat."

 

Nottinghamshire's Ben Slater said: "The batsmen were happy with the short boundaries, but I'm not sure the bowlers were too amused. We got value for our shots and you obviously saw that with the high ratio of boundaries. The pitch seemed to do a little bit all day, so I think we have a competitive score on the board that our bowlers can bowl for their innings. We wanted to bowl, but we weren't too disappointed to lose the toss. I was happy with the way that I played, and I've felt good with the way I've batted all year. I had a decent net and I just tried to go out there and do what I've done all season. Liam played well at the end and got us up to a good total, hopefully he can add to that and get a few more."


Derbyshire vs Essex, Group 1 Queen's Park, Chesterfield 11:00 AM


Essex kept alive their faint hopes of qualifying for Division One by exploiting Derbyshire’s brittle batting on the first day of the LV=Insurance County Championship match at Derby.

Shane Snater took 3 for 45 as Derbyshire were skittled for 146 after electing to bat with only Leus du Plooy offering any prolonged resistance with 43 from 91 balls.

Jamie Porter, Simon Cook and Jimmy Neesham each took two wickets to bowl Derbyshire out for less than 150 for the eighth time in 12 innings.

Derbyshire hit back with Finn Hudson-Prentice, who is returning to Sussex at the end of the season, taking two wickets as Essex closed on 86 for 3, 60 runs behind.

Derbyshire’s decision to bat on an overcast morning with the floodlights on soon looked questionable as they slipped to 31 for 3.

Tom Wood lost his off stump offering no shot to Cook, Luis Reece was lbw to one that nipped back from Snater and Brooke Guest was bowled between bat and pad by Porter.

Matt Critchley played across the line at Cook and although du Plooy switched to T20 mode by ramping Snater for six, it was a rare bright spot for the home side.

Harry Came quickly went on his first-class Derbyshire debut, caught behind pushing forward at Simon Harmer in the second over after lunch and the slide continued with Harvey Hosein edging a drive at Porter.

Du Plooy had come down the pitch to the seamers to reduce the risk of falling lbw but was given leg before to Snater and after Alex Thomson missed a drive, Neesham polished off the tail.

Having banked maximum bowling points, Essex now needed to do the same with the bat and it looked ominous for Derbyshire when Alastair Cook was dropped at second slip by Critchley on seven.

Cook advanced to 30 but Reece found enough movement to breach his defence and skipper Tom Westley struggled before edging Hudson-Prentice behind.

Hudson-Prentice had Michael Pepper caught at cover and although Nick Browne and Neesham prevented further setbacks, it will take a big effort for Essex to get a full house of bonus points.

 

Essex fast bowler Simon Cook said: We were satisfied with our performance to get Derbyshire out for 146 but it was disappointing to lose three wickets. Hopefully we can put a couple of decent partnerships together tomorrow and get ourselves in a strong position.

"Obviously we have to win this game and hope results elsewhere go in our favour but all we can do is concentrate on our own performance."

Derbyshire all-rounder Finn Hudson-Prentice said: "I thought we bowled outstandingly this evening, obviously a bit of a shame with the batting again, but we kept it tight and if we take a couple of quick ones in the morning you never know."

On his decision to return to Sussex, he said: "It was a very tough decision. Going home and being closer to family is one of the main things that swayed me to going back. I've enjoyed my time here and been given the opportunity to play first-class cricket again so I'll be eternally grateful."



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