Derbyshire were defeated by an innings and 14 runs in the LV= County Championship match with Lancashire at Southport and Birkdale Cricket Club.
Ashwell Prince hit a double-century for the hosts whilst Alviro Petersen hit his second century of the season against Derbyshire to help Lancashire hit 551.
Ben Slater hit a half-century in both innings for Derbyshire and Matthew Critchley took his maiden first-class wicket but it was not enough to stop them from tasting defeat for the second time against Lancashire this season.
This was only Derbyshire’s fourth visit to the seaside town of Southport, and their first since 1974. Billy Godleman was captain of Derbyshire for the first time, and he was pleased to win the toss and bat first on a pitch which had a reputation for becoming more spin-friendly as the match progressed. When he and Ben Slater had taken the score to 141 before Slater was out for 69 (126 balls), everything seemed to be going the way they would have hoped.
Matt Critchley and Chesney Hughes both scored centuries for Derbyshire but Graeme Welch's men fell just one wicket short of victory against Northamptonshire and the match was drawn.
This proved to be a most remarkable, intriguing match for all sorts of reasons, a match in which there were plenty of swings of fortune. When Northamptonshire won the toss and asked Derbyshire to bat first, and they started well, not losing their first wicket until sixty-five runs had been scored, Northants must have wondered whether they had made the right decision. Derbyshire were weakened by the loss of Palladino, Durston and Godleman due to injury or suspension, so they will have been pleased when Ben Slater and Chesney Hughes gave them a promising start.
Derbyshire had reached 80 for the loss of one wicket, but then they suffered the loss of five wickets while only twenty-three runs were scored. The wickets included that of Hashim Amla, who was the welcome replacement for Martin Guptill. Wayne Madsen looked to be holding the innings together, so when he was seventh out at 151, it seemed unlikely that his team would reach 200. Two young, relatively inexperienced, young cricketers came together and batted with great good sense and apparent lack of nerves in such a difficult situation.
Derbyshire and Glamorgan played out a draw at the SWALEC Stadium after two of the four days were heavily affected by adverse weather.
It was, however, a memorable match for two Derbyshire players. Scott Elstone scored his maiden first-class century of 103 not out whilst Cricket Derbyshire Academy in partnership with the University of Derby graduate Matt Critchley made his first-class debut.
On a wet blustery day, Glamorgan won the toss and asked Derbyshire to bat first. The start had been delayed until 2.40pm because a patch of wet turf where the bowler would take off in his delivery at one end had developed under the covers. Derbyshire had had to make five changes from their successful team in the previous match, four of them suffering from various niggles while Billy Godleman was suspended for the first of two matches. There was little more than an hour's play on the first day before more rain brought an early close with Derbyshire on 47 for two.
Derbyshire claimed their first LV= County Championship win of the new season as they defeated Gloucestershire by seven wickets thanks to a man of the match performance from Martin Guptill.
Guptill hit 11 sixes on his way to 227 in the first innings before taking four catches in Gloucestershire's second innings and striking a further three sixes to take his team to victory.
Having bowled their hosts out for 275, Derbyshire achieved a sizable first-innings lead having declared on 545-9 after Harvey Hosein was out for a career-best 61.
Gloucestershire fought back to set Derbyshire a victory target of 142 which they got to with consummate ease after Billy Godleman hit a half-century and Guptill finished not out on a quick-fire 31.
Tom Taylor returned career-best figures of 6-61 but Derbyshire fell to a 250-run defeat in their first LV= County Championship fixture.
Wes Durston scored a quick-fire 85 in the first innings during a 149-run partnership with Billy Godleman – who scored 76 – as Derbyshire reached near parity at the halfway stage.
Lancashire however, set Derbyshire a daunting target of 365 runs to win which proved too much for Graeme Welch’s men.
Derbyshire's LV= County Championship season started in dull conditions, and a strong cold wind blew across The 3aaa County ground all day. Wayne Madsen won the toss and asked Lancashire to take first innings, and Derbyshire's opening bowlers, Mark Footitt and Tony Palladino, took a wicket each in the first five overs. Petersen and Prince were made to work hard so that only 61 runs had been scored before lunch, and two more wickets had fallen.
Derbyshire v Leicestershire at Derby on 23 to 25 September: LV= County Championship: Division Two
By John Brown
Derbyshire started their last championship match of the season with some confidence since they had won four of their previous five matches.
Leicestershire won the toss and chose to bowl first on a pitch that looked green. After twenty overs, Derbyshire had lost three wickets, the last of them in one of the most bizarre ways possible in the game of cricket.
Cheteshwar Pujara, playing his first match at home for Derbyshire, felt that the ball, following a defensive stroke, was bouncing towards the stumps, and he instinctively knocked the ball away with his hand.
There was a unanimous appeal from the Leicestershire fielders and the umpires, after consultation, gave Pujara out Handled the Ball. This was only the fifty-ninth occasion in the history of the first-class game that a batsman had been dismissed in such a manner: strangely enough the last previous such incident in England had also been at the County ground when Karl Krikken had knocked the ball away with his hand in a match against the touring Indians in 1996.
Ben Slater had stood firm and, together with Wes Durston, added 124 for the fourth wicket. At this point Durston (50 from 59 balls with nine fours) swept a ball to be caught on the long-leg boundary, and the next wicket fell almost immediately. 186 for five developed to 289 all out, thanks mainly to Slater’ determination and watchfulness in reaching his maiden first-class hundred from 195 balls with fifteen boundaries: he was well supported by some strong strokes by Tony Palladino and Ben Cotton. Play had been interrupted for bad light for seventy-five minutes with the score on 278 for eight, but there was still time for Derbyshire to bowl eight overs before the close.
Surrey v Derbyshire at the Kia Oval on 15 to 17 September: LV= County Championship: Division Two
By John Brown
When Wayne Madsen won the toss on an overcast morning, he had no hesitation in asking Surrey to bat first. The sun burnt the clouds away within fifteen minutes of that decision and, when the home team’s openers took their partnership to 47 in the eighteenth over, there were some thoughts that Madsen may have got things wrong.
His seam bowlers, however, did not let him down: Wayne White, playing his third match on loan from Lancashire, dismissed both openers to catches by the debutant wicket-keeper, 18-year old Harvey Hosein. Surrey went into lunch with their score on 68 for two after twenty-eight overs.
After the interval Mark Footitt started one of his most destructive spells of the season: he took a wicket with the last ball of the first over of the afternoon session and then took another five wickets from his next thirty-two balls. It was daunting stuff and seemed to have set Derbyshire well on the way to success.
The ninth wicket fell at 130 to White, but there followed one of those frustrating last-wicket stands which added 51 in eleven overs. Surrey’s captain, Wilson, took control and managed to score all but one of those runs as he outwitted Derbyshire’s attempts to keep him away from the strike. Wilson was last out when he edged Ben Cotton, another debutant, to the wicket-keeper. Even so Derbyshire had every reason to feel pleased with their efforts in dismissing Surrey for an all-out total of 181. Footitt had taken six wickets and Hosein had held seven catches, equalling the best by a Derbyshire wicket-keeper (Bob Taylor – twice).
Glamorgan v Derbyshire at the SWALEC Stadium, Cardiff, on 9 to 11 September: LV= County Championship: Division Two
By John Brown
After winning their previous three championship matches, Derbyshire travelled to Wales in optimistic mood.
It was a disappointment, therefore, when Glamorgan won the toss and chose to bat on a pitch which looked good for batting. The home team were made to work hard for their runs with Tony Palladino being especially economical (34 runs from 21 overs).
Glamorgan were reduced to 158 for six, but Graham Wagg played aggressively in a stand of 91 for the seventh wicket with the in-form Cooke. Even so Derbyshire felt that they had done well to dismiss the hosts for 282.
Derbyshire were left with three overs batting at the end of the first day and Ben Slater and Billy Godleman survived these without any alarms. Next morning did not go according to plan (or expectations) as Glamorgan’s seam bowlers made life difficult for Derbyshire’s top order. Slater was surprised by a Wagg bouncer to be caught off the top edge in the gully, and the next six wickets to fall were all leg before wicket.
Gareth Cross came in with the score at 78 for five in twenty-six overs and he decided to play more shots than those who had gone before: he hit three fours and a six in his thirty-two ball stay before he became the sixth of those lbw victims. Wayne White started his innings at 131 for seven, and the first ball he faced was the start of a new spell by off-spinner Kieran Bull. By the end of that over the score had advanced by eighteen runs and White had hit sixteen of them.
Derbyshire v Worcestershire at The 3aaa County Ground on 31st August to 3rd September: LV= County Championship: Division Two
by John Brown
Derbyshire were pleased to return to four-day cricket after a break of forty days, and they were pleased to welcome the Second Division leaders, Worcestershire, to Derby.
Wayne Madsen won the toss on an overcast day, but chose to bat first. Ben Slater and Billy Godleman set the foundations with an opening partnership of 41 at just over two runs an over.
The conditions were not easy for batting and it took care and no little skill to make further progress. Godleman battled hard, but Madsen made batting look easier than anyone else during the first day’s play. This pair added 112 together before Madsen was caught at slip for an accomplished 56 (86 balls – 10 fours). 153 for one became 183 for four whereupon Wes Durston and Alex Hughes put on 48 runs at four runs an over.
There followed a slump as four wickets fell while only 52 runs were added, so Derbyshire were grateful to Alex Hughes and Tony Palladino who put on an important 58 in only eleven overs for the ninth wicket. Hughes had reached his fifty from 92 balls and he went on to score 74 (133 balls – 12 fours); it had been an excellent innings which proved to have been a crucial contribution in the context of the whole match.
© 2015 Derbyshire County Cricket Club
The 3aaa County Ground, Grandstand Road, Derby DE21 6AF.
Tel: 01332 388 101
Website design by: www.thisismedia.co.uk