In our new county cricket bulletin feature, we run the rule over Derbyshire’s second win of the LV= County Championship season and look ahead to tomorrow’s NatWest T20 Blast action.
Win No.2 For Derbyshire Leaves Leicestershire Isolated
Derbyshire have moved well clear of Leicestershire in the battle to avoid the LV= County Championship Division Two wooden spoon after triumphing over Gloucestershire on the final day at Cheltenham.
It was a hard-fought match, with the visitors only establishing an advantage courtesy of a strong second innings bowling performance. Mark Footitt began things by dispensing with openers Will Tavare and Michael Klinger, before the spin of David Wainwright (3-64) and Wes Durston (2-22) accounted for much of the middle-order as Gloucestershire were bowled out for 219.
That left Derbyshire requiring 204 to win and they got off to an excellent start thanks to their openers Ben Slater and Billy Godleman. Slater made 27 to follow up his first innings knock of 70 before departing to Tom Smith. The very next over Godleman was sent back by Jack Taylor but not before he had registered his first half-century of a disappointing Championship season.
Overseas veteran Shivnarine Chanderpaul then guided the side home, ending undefeated on 52 alongside Alex Hughes on nine. Chanderpaul had added 52 with skipper Wayne Madsen (35) for the third-wicket and 33 with Durston (27) for the fourth. All of Chanderpaul, Madsen and Durston had hit half-centuries to help earn Derbyshire a slender first innings lead.
The first part of the match had been all about the young players on show on both sides. 24 year-old Bristolian Will Tavare hit his third century of the season, while Derbyshire’s 19 year-old seam-bowler Tom Taylor recorded the maiden five-wicket haul of his career.
There was another notable contribution from county cricket’s most consistent all-rounder Will Gidman. He hit 125 to haul Gloucestershire up to 356 and is one of the latest players to be blessed with a Twitter fan page (@Gidman4England) by his loyal supporters. With first-class averages of almost 40 with the bat and less than 22 with the ball there can be few who argue with the page’s sentiments.
Key Games As NatWest T20 Blast Hots Up
With most teams having no more than three games to go in the group stage of this year’s competition, there is plenty to play for, with only Essex and Lancashire seemingly assured of a place in the quarter-finals.
The key clash in the North Group is arguably fourth-placed Worcestershire’s visit to defending champions Northamptonshire, who are in sixth and desperately in need of a win. They are unbeaten in their last four matches and have named an unchanged squad following the win over Derbyshire last Friday. The Pears, meanwhile, have lost both of their last two games and are in danger of squandering their strong start. They have lost Saeed Ajmal on international duty, but are boosted by the recruitment of New Zealand left-arm paceman Mitchell McClenaghan.
Other North Group Fixtures:
Lancashire v Derbyshire at Old Trafford
Leicestershire v Durham at Grace Road
Yorkshire v Warwickshire at Headingley
The South Group has Hampshire against Sussex as a crucial game. Sussex beat Glamorgan last time out and simply must win again to keep their quarter-final hopes alive. Perennial T20 achievers Hampshire have slipped up in recent times – losing three of their last four games – and could conceivably find themselves outside the top four at the conclusion of tomorrow night’s action if they lose again. They have T20 specialists Chris Wood and Glenn Maxwell in their squad, while Sussex have former England man Luke Wright at the top of their batting line-up, as well as rapidly improving leg-spinning all-rounder Will Beer.
Other South Group Fixtures:
Glamorgan v Essex at Cardiff
Gloucestershire v Surrey at Cheltenham
Kent v Somerset at Canterbury
County Cricket News In Brief:
Worcestershire have formally appointed former Shropshire coach Kevin Sharp as their batting and second XI coach following the recent death of Academy Director Damian D’Oliveira. WCB Performance Manager Elliot Wilson will become Academy Coach.
Northamptonshire chief executive David Smith has told BBC Radio Northampton that out-of-contract Leicestershire players Josh Cobb and Nathan Buck could be potential close-season signings.
Kent CCC have announced the death for their former president Sandy Alexander following a short illness. Alexander served as president of the club in 1984. A memorial service is expected to be held later this year at Canterbury Cathedral.
He worked for CricketWorld.com for almost three years, leading their county and domestic cricket coverage and contributing to a book about the 2012 ICC World Twenty20, before joining the hugely ambitious World Cricket Badger early in 2014.
The first Test that he remembers watching was on Channel 4 - back before the ECB marginalised potential future fans by selling the TV rights to Sky Sports - when England beat Pakistan by an innings and nine runs at Lord’s.
Besides a passion for domestic cricket, he also has an unexplainable interest in all things Zimbabwe cricket!
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