On yet another foul evening, it seemed most unlikely that this match would be able to start, but the skies cleared for a while and the umpires decided that play could start at 7.35pm with the teams contesting an eight-overs per side match.
Wayne Madsen won the toss and decided to field first. Jon Clare, playing his first match this season in this competition, took a Leicestershire wicket in his first over, but the remaining batsmen played shots at every ball and finally amassed 80 runs from their eight overs.
It seemed likely that Derbyshire would pay heavily for the three No balls bowled by their overseas Twenty20 specialist, Rana Naved-ul-Hasan. The runs conceded as a result of these three deliveries and the consequent extra balls and free hits cost the team fourteen runs.
Wes Durston set Derbyshire on their way as he hit three fours in the first over of the innings, but the next over saw two wickets fall so Derbyshire were on the back foot again. They were only able to score seventeen from the next four overs bowled by Taylor, Hoggard and Henderson with Taylor conceding only seven runs from his two overs.
So Derbyshire needed a well-nigh impossible forty-one from their last two overs: Jon Clare hit boldly to help to take twenty off the penultimate over, but only twelve came from the last, during which two wickets fell. Madsen hit his first ball over the wicket-keeper’s head to raise fleeting hopes that he could see his team home, but it was not to be and, at 8.52pm, Derbyshire lost by eight runs in light which would certainly have been too dark for first-class cricket to continue.
This proved to be a disappointing and frustrating result which left Derbyshire in fifth position and Leicestershire, for whom this was their first win, in bottom place in the North Division.
Leicestershire 80 for 3 (8 overs) (GP Smith 23, JJ Cobb 17, MAG Boyce 16*; JL Clare 1 for 12)
Derbyshire 72 for 6 (8 overs) (WJ Durston 21, JL Clare 17*; Abdul Razzaq 3 for 20, RML Taylor 2 for 7)
Leicestershire (2 points) beat Derbyshire (0) by 8 runs
Derbyshire won the toss on a fine evening and chose to bat first in their first meeting of the season with Durham. They lost a wicket to Plunkett in the first over, but Ross Whiteley played some bold shots as he hit four boundaries in his sixteen-ball innings.
After Whiteley was out, Usman Khawaja (31 balls) and Wayne Madsen (30 balls) stayed together for nine overs and added a valuable 66 together, although probably not quite as quickly as they would have liked.
This pair were both dismissed within six balls of each other, after which Chesney Hughes was the only batsman to make progress at the required rate: he hit 18 off only nine balls, but the remaining batsmen scored at less than one run a ball, and 141 was a disappointing score from twenty overs.
In reply Durham started quickly for the first two overs, but wickets to Mark Turner and Tim Groenewald in the third and fourth overs raised Derbyshire’s hopes. Gibbs and Myburgh, a recent recruit for Durham, copied Derbyshire’s third wicket pair in adding 67 from nine overs.
Two quick wickets – 87 for four – put Derbyshire ahead by the Duckworth/Lewis method, but Myburgh and Muchall took sixteen from the sixteenth over and put Durham firmly on their way again.
Even though Turner took his second wicket at the end of the seventeenth over, sixteen runs off the next over left Durham needing only six runs from the last two overs, a task which they achieved with seven balls to spare.
This defeat means that Derbyshire will need a series of successes in their remaining six matches if they are to have any realistic chance of qualifying for the semi-final stages of this competition.
They now have two matches away from home – against Leicestershire at Grace Road on Friday and the return match with Durham at Chester-le-Street next Wednesday.
Their next match at home will be against Leicestershire on Friday 29th June with a 7pm start.
Derbyshire 141 (20 overs) (UT Kwaja 36, WL Madsen 26; LE Plunkett 2 for 22, SG Borthwick 2 for 22, ME Claydon 2 for 31)
Durham 142 for 5 (18.5 overs) (JG Myburgh 46, HH Gibbs 38, GJ Muchall 21*; ML Turner 2 for 18)
Durham (2 points) beat Derbyshire (0) by 5 wickets
By John Brown
Yorkshire were the visitors for Derbyshire’s third twenty-over match of the season, and they won the toss and chose to bat in this floodlit televised match.
They started briskly with 36 runs coming from the first four overs before Dan Redfern took a well-judged running catch on the mid-wicket boundary to dismiss Jaques.
Derbyshire started their Twenty20 campaign on a grey blustery evening at the county ground. With rain forecast Wayne Madsen won the toss and asked Lancashire to bat first.
Mark Turner started with two accurate overs as he conceded only seven runs in that time, but by the end of the six-over Powerplay Lancashire had reached 52 for two, with Moore having hit 34 from only 21 balls.
The slow left-arm pairing of Chesney Hughes and David Wainwright kept the visitors’ progress in check, with Hughes completing his four overs without conceding a boundary.
Even so Lancashire’s skipper Croft managed to hit three sixes from the quicker bowlers before he succumbed to Turner for 46 (35 balls).
Wes Durston and Ross Whiteley set Derbyshire on their way with some bold strokeplay, and Derbyshire looked to be making a sound base from which to mount their final assault. They lost three wickets in nine balls, however, and, with the score at 82 for five,Lancashire looked to be favourites. But Hughes and Rana Naved-ul-Hasan played their shots and only two overs later Derbyshire were ahead of the Duckworth/Lewis par score again.
At this point Mahmood, who had proved expensive in his first two-over spell (25 runs) was brought back and he conceded 4, 1, 5 wides, another wide, one run off a No ball, followed by a 3 from the resulting free hit.
That was seventeen runs from three legitimate balls, at which point the umpires decided that the persistent light drizzle had thickened enough for play to be suspended.
The two not out batsmen, Hughes and Naved, had hit 16 runs from eleven balls and 19 from only nine balls.
Derbyshire still needed 51 runs from 8.3 overs: the umpires waited for half-an-hour before overs would have to be deducted, but after another fifteen minutes they decided that there was no chance of a resumption, so the match was abandoned with Derbyshire winning under the Duckworth/Lewis method.
It is probably fair to say that Derbyshire just about outplayed Lancashire on the night, and this result gives them hope of making further progress in the competition.
Derbyshire’s next FLt20 matches are with Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge on Friday (5.00 start), against Yorkshire at Derby on Monday and Durham at Derby next Wednesday.
Lancashire 168 for 5 (20 overs) (SJ Croft 46, SC Moore 34, PJ Horton 27; TD Groenewald 2 for 34, CF Hughes 1 for 21, ML Turner 1 for 23, DJ Wainwright 1 for 29)
Derbyshire 118 for 5 (11.3 overs) (WJ Durston 31, RA Whiteley 24; LA Procter 2 for 15)
Derbyshire (2 points) beat Lancashire (0) by 17 runs (D/L method)
Derbyshire travelled to Horsham in Sussex for their fourth away match in this competition. The forecast was not too promising, but the match started on time with Wayne Madsen winning the toss and choosing to field first.
Rana Naved-ul-Hasan was making his debut as an overseas player for Derbyshire. Sussex started briskly with seven fours being hit in the space of twenty-four balls. During this time Mark Turner had bowled the dangerous Ed Joyce, and then Tim Groenewald took two wickets in his fourth over.
With Sussex on 40 for three their batsmen concentrated on keeping their wickets intact and they added only 18 from the next six overs. Gatting and Yardy looked to accelerate but, when Gatting, having hit two sixes, was well caught by Madsen at extra-cover off David Wainwright, the score had reached 102 for five.
Leicestershire won the toss and chose to bat on yet another chilly day. Tony Palladino got Derbyshire off to a fine start as he took a hat-trick in only the fifth over of the match: the third of these wickets, which sent West Indies Test batsman Sarwan’s off-stump cartwheeling, was also the two-hundredth of his career.
This was the first first-class hat-trick for Derbyshire since Kevin Dean had taken three in three on the same ground twelve years earlier. Leicestershire’s next pair, Boyce and Cobb, presented with the parlous position of 7 for three, stayed together for fourteen overs and added 59 for the fourth wicket.
Jon Clare broke this stand while Tim Groenewald returned to dismiss opener Boyce soon after he had reached his fifty. There was further resistance, mainly from Kadeer Ali, who hit 48 runs, but Groenewald took five of the last six wickets to finish with the excellent economical figures of five for 29 in almost eighteen overs.
Derbyshire started their pursuit of 177 which the home side had achieved for their first innings with the new left-handed partnership of Matt Lineker and Chesney Hughes, but rain came after only three overs and there could be no further play on the first day. Derbyshire – 5 without loss.
On a cool, but fine, Jubilee Bank Holiday Monday Derbyshire won the toss and chose to field first. Unfortunately Martin Guptill, nursing a broken finger, had been ordered to rest by New Zealand, and Derbyshire decided to rest three of their front-line bowlers. Even so Derbyshire’s second-string attack did well against a strong Warwickshire batting line-up.
Mark Turner took two early wickets and a fine throw by Tom Knight ran out the visitors’ captain, Troughton after he had looked in good touch. Chesney Hughes and Alex Hughes both bowled economically with good support from the field. Ambrose and Maddy added 90 in seventeen overs, but, when Rikki Clarke joined Ambrose, the scoring rate picked up with Clarke hitting three sixes and three fours in his 29-ball innings.
Without Clarke’s bold hitting Derbyshire would have had every reason to feel satisfied with their work at the half-way stage. 243 was likely to be a stiff target, and it quickly became even tougher when Derbyshire lost two wickets in the first over bowled by Woakes.
After five overs the score had slipped to 25 for four and the rest of the innings was unlikely to be more than a face-saving exercise. Five of the middle-order batsmen reached double-figures, but only one, Jon Clare, went on to pass twenty: he played the major role in a last-wicket stand of 33 as he hit cleanly to reach his fifty from 48 balls. He was last out for 57 including six fours and a six.
Warwickshire thus recorded a comfortable win with almost eight overs still to be bowled, and they went to the top of the table in Group C. Derbyshire’s next match in this competition will be at Horsham against Sussex next Sunday, 10th June.
Warwickshire 242 for 6 (40 overs) (TR Ambrose 77*, R Clarke 48, DL Maddy 40, JO Troughton 34; ML Turner 3 for 40)
Derbyshire 137 (32.1 overs) (JL Clare 57; SA Piolet 4 for 31, CR Woakes 3 for 46, CJC Wright 2 for 15)
Warwickshire (2 points) beat Derbyshire by 105 runs
The fine weather continued on the first day of this match and, when Derbyshire won the toss and chose to bat, things seemed set fair for a good start for the Division 2 leaders. But, cricket being cricket, just the opposite came to pass: Gloucestershire’s unsung seamers, Will Gidman, Payne and Saxelby caused several edges and mishits and their fielders caught well. By lunchtime Derbyshire had been reduced to 83 for eight with none of their batsmen having reached twenty.
After the interval the last two wickets fell to run outs and Derbyshire were all out for 95, a position from which they were going to have to play very well if they were to recover. Although the first wicket fell in the third over, a couple of missed chances allowed Gloucestershire, first to pass the Derbyshire total for the loss of only two wickets, and then to build a comfortable lead. By the close on the first day, the home county were 87 ahead with five wickets still left.
Gloucestershire were dismissed by lunch on a much greyer and colder second day by which time their lead had increased to a daunting 199. Home skipper, Alex Gidman, so often successful with the bat against Derbyshire, had completed a defiant and well-crafted century. As might be expected Derbyshire batted better at the second attempt with Martin Guptill playing some aggressive shots and captain Wayne Madsen digging in as he set a captain’s example. Even so the score slipped to 91 for three at which point Dan Redfern joined his captain and they built a partnership of 97 before Madsen was adjudged lbw for 73 (130 balls): this was the second time in two games when he had reached fifty, only to have his innings cut short by a dubious decision.
To add to Derbyshire’s woes it seems that Ross Whiteley was also mistakenly given out caught at the wicket, and Derbyshire finished the day on 211 for five, only twelve runs in front.
On the third morning Derbyshire’s hoped-for fightback did not materialise: Redfern advanced his overnight score from 64 to 77 before he offered a straightforward catch to extra-cover from the first ball after a thirty-five minute stoppage for rain. Jon Clare hit some bold shots in hitting an unbeaten 43 from 38 balls, but a final score of 283 left Gloucestershire needing only 85 runs to win.
Despite a wicket for Tony Palladino from the fourth ball of the innings, Howell and Williamson added 52 before Clare dismissed them both. Derbyshire’s batsmen had not scored enough runs to allow their bowlers to make further inroads, and for the third match in a row, the game was over inside three days.
Despite this disappointing loss, Derbyshire still head the Second Division table, but now realise that they must play with greater consistency if they are to achieve what they and all they supporters are hoping for.
Derbyshire’s next championship match will start on Tuesday next, atGrace Road,Leicester.
Derbyshire 95 (32.2 overs) (WJ Durston 18; WRS Gidman 4 for 29, DA Payne 3 for 23) and 283 (77.5 overs) (DJ Redfern 77, WL Madsen 72, JL Clare 43*, MJ Guptill 42; WRS Gidman 4 for 50, DA Payne 4 for 89, ID Saxelby 2 for 62)
Gloucestershire 294 (92.3 overs) (APRGidman 129, KS Williamson 56, HJH Marshall 31, AP Palladino 4 for 84, TD Groenewald 3 for 66, RA Whiteley 2 for 38) and 85 for 1 (21.2 overs) (BACHowell 31, KS Williamson 29*; JL Clare 2 for 17)
Gloucestershire (21 points) beat Derbyshire (3) by 7 wickets
At last the weather relented and cricket could be played in conditions which were more suitable for all involved. On the first day of this match the temperature was in the high twenties, andEssexwon the toss and chose to bat. They seemed to be setting a platform for the expected large total, but the runs came slowly and wickets fell at regular intervals.
Tim Groenewald and Ross Whiteley dismissed the openers in the first twenty overs, but it was when David Wainwright was introduced in the twenty-sixth over that the first really significant wicket fell.
His very first ball spun sharply and lifted to take the outside edge of Shah who had just returned from a spell playing in theIPLand wicket-keeper Tom Poynton took an excellent catch.
Pettini set out to provide the backbone to theEssexinnings, but he lost two more partners when Wainwright started a second spell: these two wickets fell in his first over, so at 101 for five,Essex were in trouble. Pettini was supported first by Greg Smith, then by Masters, in two stands which added 65 between them in a painstaking thirty-one overs.
Essex’s last four wickets added only sixteen runs, and Derbyshire had every right to feel pleased to have dismissed their hosts for a meagre 182. Wainwright finished with five for 51 on a pitch which should have favoured batsmen: it was remarkable in that he had bowled three separate spells and taken a wicket with the first ball of each – and it was his third five-wicket haul of the season.
Derbyshire were made to work very hard by the experienced opening pair of Essex bowlers, but they survived fifteen overs for the loss of only one wicket before the close – 37 for one.
Martin Guptill and Wayne Madsen scored at almost a run a minute for the first fifty minutes on the second morning: Guptill was out after they had added 81 for the second wicket and then Wes Durston made sure that Derbyshire’s good progress was maintained with a partnership of 77 for the third wicket. Madsen seemed unlucky to be given out caught at the wicket soon after he had reached a hard-earned fifty from 126 balls.
Durston continued in fine fluent form and he reached an excellent hundred in only 110 balls with eight fours and two sixes. At one stage it looked as though Derbyshire would go on and make a large total, but several middle-order batsmen were guilty of over-ambitious shots. The score slipped from 232 for four to 278 for nine with leg-spinner Craddock causing most of the misjudgements. Tim Groenewald joined Tom Poynton in the hope that they might score the twenty-two runs needed to earn a third batting point.
For some seasons now Poynton has shown promise, but he chose this moment to hint at the fulfilment to come. In just over five overs Derbyshire’s last pair added another 45 and Poynton completed his maiden first-class fifty in only 35 balls including seven fours and two sixes. Groenewald hit a six of his own and this partnership definitely put Derbyshire on the front foot for the start of theEssexsecond innings.
Groenewald continued his good work by having both Essex openers caught in the slips in his first two overs. Shah and Pettini survived until the end of the day withEssexon 46 for two, still 95 runs in arrears.
This pair continued for another thirty minutes on the third morning before Pettini was caught off Wainwright, who then bowled Foakes in his next over. At 77 for four Essex were in real trouble, but Shah and James Foster battled hard for eighteen overs in adding fifty at which point Shah missed an intended pull from a ball bowled by Durston which went behind his legs to hit his leg-stump.
Foster played with care as he sought lasting support from his fellow-batsmen, but wickets continued to fall so that, at 183 for seven, Essex were only 42 runs ahead with three wickets remaining. Now Foster changed gear: while Derbyshire set their fields deep, Foster refused the many easy singles on offer and played big shots when the field came closer at the end of each over. In fifteen overs the last three wickets added another fifty-one runs, all of them except one extra from the bat of Foster.
Tony Palladino eventually trapped him lbw, so Derbyshire were left with a target of 94 in thirty-one overs plus a full day.
Guptill and Paul Borrington made sure that they did not lose any wickets to the new ball, and they scored only five runs in the first five overs. At this point Guptill drove Willoughby back over his head for six, a feat which he repeated in Willoughby’s next over. Thereafter the runs came at almost eight runs an over, mostly scored by Guptill who reached his fifty from 42 balls, although Borrington played a few shots of his own as victory came near. This was the first time Derbyshire had won a game at this Chelmsford ground since 1937, a fact which made the success all the more welcome.
This ten-wicket win had been a wonderful performance by a team which is gaining in confidence and self-belief. It takes them further ahead at the top of the Second Division, twenty-six points in front of second-placedKent. These are still early days and the team are very aware that they have still to play Kent and Yorkshire twice each and Hampshire once, but if they can keep playing the sort of cricket we have seen so far this season, then anything is possible.
Derbyshire’s next championship match starts atBristolon Wednesday, 30 May, when they play Gloucestershire in a return match.
Essex182 (79.2 overs) (ML Pettini 56, T Westley 36, OA Shah 21; DJ Wainwright 5 for 56, TD Groenewald 2 for 26) and 234 (84.2 overs) (JS Foster 96, OA Shah 75; TD Groenewald 3 for 26, DJ Wainwright 3 for 83, AP Palladino 2 for 44)
Derbyshire 323 (88.5 overs) (WJ Durston 116, T Poynton 50*, WL Madsen 50, MJ Guptill 36; TR Craddock 5 for 96, DD Master 2 for 53) and 96 for 0 (17 overs) (MJ Guptill 66*, PM Borrington 30*)
Derbyshire (22 points) beat Essex (3) by 10 wickets
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