Week 9 of the County Championship came in the midst of the T20 Blast it also coincided with Covid catching up with me meaning I missed out on both Essex beating Surrey in the Blast and Day 1 of the CC match against Hampshire. More of that later as it was the first match of the round to finish. England in the meantime polished off a 3 nil series win against New Zealand, and in some style, my doubts about one Johnny Bairstow must be put behind me now. Let’s have a look at who did what in the County Championship this week.

Division 1

Essex v Hampshire – The Cloud County Ground, Chelmsford. Tom Westley won the toss for Essex and elected top bat. Essex won by 12 runs.

Essex 238 All Out & 223 All Out, Hampshire 163 All Out & 286 All Out

This was a match that caused a lot of angst, the early season wickets at the County Ground resulted in runs galore, with wickets very hard to come. by, this one saw 40 wickets taken, with 28 taken by spinners, cue many complaints from Somerset fans, whose team weren’t of course involved in this match. Essex found themselves 16 for 3 having opted to bat. Essex opener Nick Browne hasn’t been having the best of seasons he was out for a 14 ball Duck in the 4th over, bowled by Kyle Abbot (Not a spinner), Keith Barker (also not a spinner) despatched Alastair Cook in the 7th over, that made for a very unpalatable 7 for 2 for Essex. Dan Lawrence not long back from his second hamstring injury was next to go, Brad Wheal trapped him LBW for just 2 and that was the 16 for 3 in the 14th over of the day. This wasn’t going to go the whole way! Back to my standard way of writing about these CC games, Tom Westley fell just short of his 50, but gets a mention for his 46 from 111 balls. It took a 73 ball, 71 from All Rounder Shane Snater to give some true respectability to this Essex innings, Aaron Beard playing his first CC match of the season for Essex contributed a useful 33 from 48 balls, batting at 10. Essex made 238 and Liam Dawson took 3 for 71 in his 18.5 overs. Essex were bowled out in 71.5 overs.

Simon Harmer was the story off the Hampshire innings and the cause of the calls for pitch inspectors, a word for Nick Gubbins who scored 34 from 42 balls at 3 and them Keeper Ben Brown with 38 from 63 balls, batting at 6 as carnage was happening all around courtesy of said Harmer. Keith Barker scored 24 and Kyle Abbot 27, but Harmer took 8 for 46 from his 14.2 overs as Hampshire were bowled out for 163 in 35.2 overs. Sam Cook contributed the other 2 wickets.

Happily Nick Browne had a better start for Essex with 33 from 98 balls but the Hampshire spinners in Felix Organ and Liam Dawson made an easily run through the Essex wickets as they had Essex on 51 for 5, Essex had Adam Rossington with 60 from 71 balls and Simon Harmer with 61 from 99 to thank for their final score of 223. The innings was done and dusted in 63.5 overs and Liam Dawson took 7 for 68 in his 28.5 overs.

An opening stand of 97 suggested Hants second innings was going to be a better one and last rather longer. Organ scored 65 from 79 balls before he was bowled by Harmer in the 26th over. 7 for 1 had turned in to 140 for 5 by the 35th over. Aaron Beard had taken 2 of the 5, the other 3? Harmer of course. Wickets fell at a steady pace as Hampshire edged towards the required runs, Beard took a 3rdf and finished with 3 for 52 from his 13 overs. With a handful of runs needed Keith Barker who’d made a very patient 42 from 64 balls decoded to try to heft Harmer for 6, the ball fell to Paul Walter and the game was won by Essex. Harmer took 7 for 161 in his 32.3 overs. Making a total of 15 for 207 for the Essex spinner.

Gloucestershire v Lancashire – Seat Unique Stadium, Bristol. Ryan Higgins won the toss for Gloucestershire and elected to bat. Match Drawn

Gloucestershire 337 All Out & 176 for 3 , Lancashire 402 All Out

The first century of the round, alphabetically of course, opener Chris Dent batted for nearly 2 hours scoring 110 from 274 balls as wickets fell around him. Zafar Zohar batting at 9 scored 62 from 99 balls. Gloucestershire batted for 110.1 overs Jack Morley playing in only his second First Class match took 4 for 91 in his 29 overs.

Lancashire had one of those innings where several batters contributed good runs, opener Keaton Jennings scored 94 from 152 balls, he and Josh Bohannon put on 115 for the 2nd wicket. Steven Croft in at 4 scored 80 from 154 balls, Jamie Salt 38 from 43. Luke Wood in at 8 scored 50 from 110 balls, sharing a partnership of 67 with Tom Bailey who scored 40 from 61 balls. That all added up to 402 from 132.2 overs.

This match was heading for a draw as Miles Hammond and Keeper James Bracey occupied the crease for over 2.5 hours. Hammond made 58 from 129 balls and Bracey 55 from 93 balls.

Northamptonshire v Warwickshire – The County Ground, Northampton. Ricardo Vasconcelos won the toss for Northants and elected to bat. Match Drawn.

Northamptonshire 451 All Out & 273 for 4, Warwickshire 405 All Out

Four innings of 50 and over saw Northants build a big score of 451in just 103 overs. Having lost their captain for just 5 and Ryan Rickleton for 4, Emilio Gay and Luke Proctor put on 88 for the 3rd wicket. Gay scored 70 from 70 balls before4 becoming that 3rd wicket. Rob Keogh and Josh Cobb put on 161 for the 5th wicket after Proctor was out for 33. Cobb scored 88 from 103 balls and Keogh went on to score 130 from 155 balls. Keeper Lewis McManus scored 58 from 108 balls to help his team to that 451. Oliver Hannon-Dalby was the best of the bowlers with 4 for 84 from his 24 overs.

Warwickshire opener Dom Sibley scored 102 from 273 balls, a stroke rate of 61.84, pretty perfect for an opener, but very probably not what the speedy England set up is looking for. He now has 481 runs for the season so far at an average of 43.72. Keeper Michael Burgess shared a partnership of 88 with Nathan McAndrew, Burgess scored 77 from 80 balls and McAndrew was not out 59 from 106 balls. Warwickshire batted for 145.4 overs, Jack White took 4 for 66 in his 28 overs as Northants used 7 bowlers.

This match had too much time taken out of it with two 400 plus innings, and over 248 overs bowled, it was heading to an inevitable draw. Especially considering another two centuries to add to Keogh’s from Northants first innings. Ryan Rickelton in at 3 scored 103 from 167 balls and Luke Proctor scored 144 from 204 balls as the pair had a stand of 226 for the 3rd wicket. Warwickshire bowled 71.2 overs before the game was declared a Draw.

Surrey v Kent – The Oval, London. Jack Leaning won the toss for Kent and put Surrey in to bat. Match Drawn

Surrey 673 for 7 dec, Kent 331 All Out &

That decision at the toss has to be one of the most bizarre this season, Surrey are second only to Yorkshire on batting points with 23, to Yorkshire’s 24. Before this match they’d scored 1415 runs at the Oval in just 3 matches. IN the light of that I might have chosen to bat first! Surrey built a huge score in 129.2 overs. The 673 included no less than 4 centuries, 20 year old Ben Geddes shared a 3rd wicket partnership of 213 with the legend that is Hashim Amla, both scored 124 from 169 balls for Amla and 242 for Geddes, what an experience for the young batter! Keeper Jamie Smith scored 55 from 71 balls after sharing a partnership of 107 with Geddes. he 5th wicket, Smith, fell with the score on 445, Sam Curran scored the quickest century of the innings, he scored 126 from just 75 balls, while Will Jacks scored 103 from 92 balls. Kent used 8 bowlers and it wasn’t a great time for any of them, Daniel Bell Drummond took 1 for 25 in his 9 innings, but 5 of the bowlers shipped over 100 runs. Surrey declared after 129.2 overs, to the relief of those bowlers I should imagine.

There was a century maker in the Kent innings, they lost ben Compton for 4, an unusual occurrence this season, in fact ge reached and passed the thousand runs mark in the second innings, he’s been a revelation. Daniel Bell-Drummond was the century man, he scored 102 from 202 balls sharing a partnership of 161 with stand in captain Jack Leaning. Leaning scored 75 from §75 balls. Leaning was out in the 76th over with Kent on 256, they then lost their remaining 6 wickets for 75 runs in 27 overs. 21 year old Tom Lawes took 4 for 51 in his 13 overs and Kent were all out for 331 in 103 overs.

For all the runs scored by Surrey this season they’ve had 3 drawn matches before this one, at 17:50 on Day 4 Kent are batting away and have a lead of 14. This is now batting practice for Kent, Daniel Bell Drummond is batting and has 107 from 195 balls after Joe Denly with 69 from 131 balls and Ben Compton scored 126 for the first wicket. It’s a case of when the draw is declared, not when, to give Surrey 4 wins and 4 draws for the season so far. In fact the draw has come up as the result with Kent on 361 for 4 after 117 overs. Bell Drummond finishing not out on that 107.

Division 2

Nottinghamshire v Middlesex – Trent Bridge, Nottingham. Steven Mullaney won the toss for Notts and elected to bat. Match Drawn.

Nottinghamshire 551 for 8 dec, Middlesex 376 All Out & 261 for 1 dec

Two Century Makers in this one for Notts, they lost Ben Slater for just 9 in the 4th over, but Haseeb Hameed went on to score 101 from 154 balls, his was the 4th wicket to fall as Notts went from 9 for 1 to 227 for 4. Lyndon James in at 5 and Mullaney at 6 put on 154 for the 5th wicket, Mullaney scored 79 from 125 balls and 23 year old James scored 155 from 249 balls. James and Liam Patterson-White put on 92 for the 7th wicket , James batted for over 5 hours. Patterson-White scored 50 from 73 balls. Notts scored 551 for 8 in 132.3 overs. Middlesex used 7 bowlers, Luke Hollman took 4 for 122 in his 25.3 overs.

There were no centuries for Middlesex but there were 4 notable innings, Mark Stoneman, opening scored 67 from 102 balls as wickets fell around him, Middlesex were 37 for 3 in the 10th over. Stoneman was out with the score on 106 and Tom Helm fell at the same score. Max Holden and Keeper John Simpson put on 142 for the 6th wicket, Holden scored 86 from 221 balls and Simpson 92 from 184 balls. Simpson scored 92 from 184 balls sharing 83 runs with Luke Hollman who made 52 from 87 balls. James Pattinson took 4 for 65 from his 22.2 overs as Middlesex were bowled out in 117.2 overs.

A straight 100 overs were bowled by Notts as Mark Stoneman and Sam Robson both grabbed a century they made 201 before Robson was out for 108 from 258 balls. Stoneman was not out 109 from 296, wonders for his season average, but another inevitable draw!

Sussex v Derbyshire – The 1st Central County Ground, Hove. Billy Godelman won the toss for Derbyshire and elected to bat. Sussex win by 5 wickets.

Derbyshire 551 for 8 & 127 for 7 dec, Sussex 337 All Out &

Shan Masood very nearly reached 1000 runs before the end of May, but he definitely did reach that mark in this match, he reached the 100o in just 12 innings and now stands at 1074 in 13 innings, what a treat for Derbyshire fans! He just pipped Ben Compton to the 100 =0 runs in 2022. He scored just 46 in this first innings. There were 2 century makers; Wayne Madsen in at 4 scored 176 from 263 balls, batting for nearly 6 hours. He and Luis Reece put on 120 for the 5th wicket, Reece was that 5th wicket, having scored 52 from 117 balls. Madsen and Anuj Dal put on 150 for the 6th wicket. Dal scored 146 from 280 balls, finsihing not out. Mark Watt in at 10 scored 55 from 67 balls as Derbyshire declared om 551 for 8 after 151 overs. Sussex used 7 bowlers and Delroy Rawlins took 3 for 129 in his 31 overs.

Another Pakistan star shone brightly in the Sussex innings, Mohammad Rizwan scored 130 from 227 balls after Sussex had fallen to 27 for 2 in reply. He and Tom Alsop shared a 3rd wicket partnership of 95 as Alsop scored 44 from 86 balls. Rizwan and Keeper Oli Carter put on 91 for the 4th wicket. Carter scored 56 from 98 balls as Sussex were bowled out for 337 in 94.4 balls. Hayden Kerr took 3 for 63 from his 18.4 overs.

Derbyshire batted for a quick 41 overs in their second innings, scoring 127 as they went, but losing 7 wickets. Jack Brooks took 5 for 46 in his 10 overs as Derbyshire declared to set Sussex a score to win.

I tuned into the end of this one, as one of the few games that could produce a result. Ali Orr started things off well for Sussex scoring 141 from 203 balls, sharing a partnership of 140 with Tom Alsop who scored 55 from 91 balls. Rizwan joined Orr and the pair out on 93 for the 3rd wicket. As I type Rizwan and Delroy Rawlings are at the crease, thank you YouTube! Sussex need 39 runs from 48 balls in a very T20 type scenario! Oh to be at Hove watching Rizwan! Rawlins is out, a great catch for Madsen to make this an even more memorable game. Sussex need 34 from 43 balls. And drinks are being taken. Oli Carter has joined Rizwan and hit a huge 6 on his second ball – 25 from 37 balls required. Make that 9 from 27 balls and this is looking like Sussex’s first win in the CC since April 2021! A came for Oli Carter with 23 from 15 before he’s trapped LBW leaves Sussex needing 3 to win. Rizwan will face the first ball from the next over, he gets a single to take him to 76 from 79 balls. the commentator from Derbyshire is furious that Sussex weren’t made to follow on, that. should inevitably have meant they couldn’t lose. Instea d Sussex have won this match with 5 wickets in had and 17 balls remaining. Don’t you love County Cricket!

Worcestershire v Glamorgan – David Lloyd won the toss for Glamorgan and put Worcestershire in to bat. Glamorgan won by 3 wickets.

271 All Out & 199 All Out, Glamorgan 139 All Out & 334 for 7

Ed Barnard is having an amazing season with the bat! And this match was no exception, Worcs fell to 63 for 5 before Barnard shared a partnership of 120 with Keeper Gareth Roderick for the 6th wicket. Roderick scored 46 from 124 balls and Barnard went on to score 131 from 182 balls. That put him on 665 for the season at an average of 66.5! In spite of Barnard’s century Worcs were bowled out in 84.4 overs 4 bowlers shared the wickets.

Glamorgan’s innings lasted just 44.3 overs as Joe Leach took 6 for 44 in his 13 overs. Opener Edward Byrom top scored with 57 from 131 balls in a total of just 139.

There was no repeat of Barnard’s heroics in Worcs second innings, they were bowled out in 71.4 overs, Jake Libby had the top score of 49 from 140 balls. Michael Neser was the best of the bowlers with 4 for 50 from his 19 overs.

Glamorgan had time in the game and a chase on their hands. Colin Ingram in at 3 scored 103 from 203 balls, he and Billy Root saved a 5th wicket partnership of 95 as Glamorgan headed to the win. Root fell 1 short of his century, scoring 99 from 172 balls as Glamorgan got the runs with 3 wickets remaining.

Plenty of Centuries again this week!

  • Chris Dent – Gloucestershire – 110 from 274 balls
  • Rob Keogh – Northamptonshire – 130 from 155 balls
  • Dom Sibley – Warwickshire – 102 from 273 balls
  • Ryan Rickelton – Northamptonshire – 103 from 167 balls
  • Luke Proctor – Northamptonshire – 144 from 204 balls
  • Hashim Amla – Surrey. – 124 from 169 balls
  • Ben Geddes – Surrey. – 124 from 242 balls
  • Sam Curran – Surrey – 126 from 75 balls
  • Will Jacks – Surrey. – 103 from 92 balls
  • Daniel Bell Drummond – Kent. – 102 from 202 balls
  • Daniel Bell Drummond – Kent. – 107 from 195 balls
  • Haseeb Hameed – Nottinghamshire – 101 from 154 balls
  • Lyndon James – Nottinghamshire – 155 from 249 balls
  • Mark Stoneman – Middlesex. – 109 from 296 balls
  • Sam Robson. – Middlesex – 108 from 258 balls
  • Wayne Madsen – Derbyshire. – 176 from 263 balls
  • Anuj Dal – Derbyshire. – 146 from 280 balls
  • Mohammad Rizwan – Sussex – 130 from 227 balls
  • Ali Orr. – Sussex. – 141 from 203 balls
  • Ed Barnard – Worcestershire – 131 from 182 balls
  • Colin Ingram – Glamorgan – 102 from 203 balls

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