COUNTY ROUND-UP: Shantry 10-fer gives Worcestershire big win

Worcestershire became the first side to taste victory in 2015 as the other five MCC University matches ended in draws across the country.

Jack Shantry led the Pears to a comprehensive innings-and-120-run win over Oxford MCCU at The Parks, taking his second five-wicket haul of the contest to help bowl the students out for just 95 in their second innings.

Shantry even managed to better his first innings showing by ending with incredible figures of five for eight from 13.3 overs to give him impressive match figures of 31.3-19-26-10. Charlie Morris took four for 17 against his former side, with Lloyd Sabin one of only three Oxford batsmen to reach double figures in top-scoring with 26.

Earlier in the day, Worcestershire had declared their first innings at 339 for six in reply to the home side’s 124. Tom Kohler-Cadmore top-scored with 63 not out, while Alex Gidman marked his Worcestershire debut with 43.

Chris Cooke completed only his second first-class century before Glamorgan declared on 434 against Cardiff MCCU. The students then struggled in reply and ended on 110 for eight with only number three Neil Brand remaining at the crease for any length of time in making 46. Loan signing Craig Meschede took three for 18, while there were two wickets apiece for David Lloyd and Dean Cosker.

Somerset finally declared on 354 for three at Taunton Vale, with Johann Myburgh ending unbeaten on 150 and new signing Jim Allenby on 54. Durham MCCU then also struggled with the bat and largely limped to 129 for seven at stumps. The one bright point was the contribution of skipper Cameron Steel, who made 80 from 159 balls at number three. Lewis Gregory (3-37), Peter Trego (2-16), Jamie Overton (1-21) and Jack Leach (1-17) were the Somerset wicket-takers.

Former Northamptonshire batsman Christian Davis hit 59 as Leeds/Bradford MCCU finished on 176 for nine in reply to Sussex‘s day one 283 for six in Hove. Liam Watkinson also chipped in with 35 from number eight, but the Sussex opening pair of Steve Magoffin and Ajmal Shahzad proved too good for most of the batsmen. Magoffin finished with the typically parsimonious figures of four for 17 from 12 overs, while Shahzad marked his Sussex debut with four for 50 from 18. Fellow new signing Tymal Mills got through 10 overs and finished with none for 22.

Hampshire declined the opportunity to push for a win in favour of more batting practice in Southampton. Loughborough MCCU had closed day two on 88 for three in reply to Hampshire’s 474 for four but were soon all out for 149 as spinners Danny Briggs (2-12) and Liam Dawson (3-3) wrapped things up.

Hampshire then decided against enforcing the follow-on and promoted Adam Wheater to open alongside skipper Jimmy Adams. The pair added 117 before Wheater was LBW for 45, with Adams going onto make 98 before handing Nitish Kumar his second wicket of the contest. Hampshire finished on 236 for four, with all of their top five, along with Chris Wood who ended on 52, now having already notched up half-centuries this season.

No play was possible on the final day at Fenner’s, with opener Philip Hughes left unbeaten on 55 as Cambridge MCCU ended on 82 for three in reply to Northamptonshire‘s 357 for seven.

News In Brief:
Derbyshire will lose the services of overseas signing Martin Guptill earlier than initially thought after the New Zealander was selected in all three of his country’s squads for their tour of England. Guptill will now only be available for up to the first three of Derbyshire’s LV= County Championship fixtures. Elite Performance Director Graeme Welch said ther club would “now look to put alternative plans in place”.

Worcestershire have signed Sri Lankan spinner Sachithra Senanayake to cover for Saeed Ajmal for the first part of the season subject to approval from SLC and receipt of the correct visa. Ajmal was yesterday named in Pakistan’s squads for their impending tour of Bangladesh and will not now be available until mid-May at the earliest.

Daniel Grummitt

Cricket Writer at World Cricket Badger
Daniel first began writing about cricket in 2011, having been a fan of the game ever since his Grandad introduced him to it at the age of 10.

He worked for 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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