County cricket talking points: Surrey and Hampshire claim narrow wins | locust

First ball: The winning streak continues for Burns’ men

In a good week for red-ball cricket, Surrey found themselves in unexpectedly squeaky butt territory as a resourceful Somerset side creaked at their heels throughout the 12th session of their game in the county championship.

After knocking out the home team for 180, Rory Burns probably thought a decent partnership would move the leaders forward and two would put them in a winning position. The first came under somewhat unusual circumstances (it was a match of unusual circumstances, in which one Overton concussed the other) as Hashim Amla was unable to continue, so the second 136 wicket partnership was built by Captain, Overseas Signature and Ben Geddes. Will Jacks and Jordan Clark added 86 for the sixth wicket and Somerset were around 200 behind with almost half the game remaining.

But the pitches aren’t deteriorating this season (or maybe, as in Surrey’s case, spinners aren’t selected) and Lewis Goldsworthy and Lewis Gregory got their level before Peter Siddle showed he wasn’t. has lost none of his tenacity at 37. Surrey were still 39 short with half the order back in the hutch, but Jacks and Clark continued where they left off the first time around and the lucid Overton were in the crease when the winning runs were marked. Surrey remains in the lead.

Ball two: Hill the hurdle as Hampshire claim victory

Hampshire stayed on the heels of the unbeaten leaders after an even narrower home win against Yorkshire (whose players are to be commended for retaining their focus under the circumstances).

Victory seemed a long way off after the visitors racked up 428 points, with 21-year-old George Hill taking over the seconds with 131 in the game opener slot. At 12-2, James Vince was at the crease and knew his hitters would have to deliver – and they did, all but his No. 11 scoring at least 30 to stay in the game.

Not a single Tyke could hit that mark a second time, as the experienced seam trio of Keith Barker, Kyle Abbott and Brad Wheal pocketed three wickets apiece, leaving their batters 197 to get. Liam Dawson, whose rotation hadn’t taken a wicket, and Nick Gubbins stuck to the old school plan of getting them fast, scoring a total of 109 runs on 110 balls, but those are the old heads sages of Barker, James Fuller and Abbott (over 100 years between them) who brought home the points.

Ball three: Wells digs deep in a long chase

Lancashire, stripped of some of their stars by England calling the Test and ODI teams, clung on to the front two with an impressive chase in what turned into a one-legged game at Edgbaston.

After Alex Davies somewhat inevitably scored a century for Warwickshire against his former comrades, Dane Vilas was aiming for 329 in just over a day to win the game – even a day earlier such a goal seemed rigid, but perhaps things have changed since McCullumism was introduced to English cricket.

Luke Wells, in an indifferent dip of form, and Rob Jones, just his second game in the Championship, were the unlikely Red Rose version of English redheads, Jonny Bairstow and Ben Stokes. But it wasn’t a flurry of sixes and fours, but rather a calculated accumulation that kept the required rate in check and ensured that the late mid-order wasn’t exposed too soon. Wells’ 175 in just under seven hours was cricket as it was played – and no less effective for that.

Alex Davies on his way to a century for Warwickshire against Lancashire. Photography: Barry Mitchell/Rex/Shutterstock

Ball four: Notts takes an easy victory after the first round

In the Second Division, Nottinghamshire’s victory over Leicestershire as Middlesex went down in Derbyshire completed a 20-point swing, which was enough to send the Midlanders top of the table.

It was another example of an emerging theme this season. No team is ever knocked out of the game the grounds staff are responding to the request to make it harder for a bowler to hit good areas at just under 80 mph and expect the ball to swing that way and this, receiving a 4-75 routine as a reward.

Ben Slater and Haseeb Hameed headed for the crease with the Grace Road scoreboard telling them they were over 400 behind, but after another good shot from Ben Duckett and plenty of support in order (even the Extras were a run away from notching half a century) their counterparts, Hasan Azad and Rishi Patel took guard a second time at over 100 behind – which must have been a bit soul-destroying.

Cue one of the stars of the start of the season, Liam Patterson-White, who added four second-inning wickets to the three he won in the first dig, and the visitors went the short distance home after picked up a heat victory – not something that used to happen too often after conceding 440 runs before lunch on day two.

Ball five: The past is a foreign land

Older readers (am I kidding that there are others?) may remember the days of the John Player League, with its shortened swings, Peter Walker on the gantry and 40 overs per side – still the perfect format for a Sunday afternoon game. .

Jim Laker would describe a 200 goal as “taking a bit of time” and Richie Benaud would keep tabs on the required rate, warning us that the batting side wouldn’t want him to go past a ball.

Last week at Chelmsford, Essex went 244-7 in their 20 overs and Sussex, avoiding their inside Gavaskar, fought well, led by Ravi Bopara back into familiar territory. They missed 11 tie runs, but the 40 overs produced 477 runs. Somewhere, Peter, Richie and Jim nod to Fred Trueman, who says, “I don’t know what’s going on over there.

Ball six: Rehan makes a Rashid

The search for effective England spinners continues – hint: try the ones that spin the ball the most – with Adil Rashid’s fragile shoulder being as much a part of England’s clean-ball success as Jos Buttler’s mighty bat.

It should therefore be noted that Rehan Ahmed, the 17-year-old leg spinner from Leicestershire, came on just after the power play, defending a goal of 158, and took four wickets in crucial passes from the middle for just 22 points, Durham collapsing for a paltry 106. .

He’s only making his way through the game, but Leicestershire’s faith in him is being rewarded. He tops their bowling averages with 14 wickets at an economy rate of just over seven, having played all 11 games.

If we have to let Liam Livingstone into the Test XI as some kind of uber strikeout, but he’s not the future of the English spin – players like Sussex’s Ahmed and Archie Lenham, another 17-year-old , are. After all, why can’t spinners attack as hard as beaters?

This article is from the 99.94 cricket blog
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