Yorkshire lost their fight against the bad light and their battle for maximum win points today against Northants at Headingley today as the batsmen fought hard and bad light forced an end to proceedings with a possible 22 overs still left to play. MATCH DRAWN: Yorkshire 11 points, Northants 8 points.
Yorkshire lost their fight against the bad light and their battle for maximum win points today against Northants at Headingley today as the batsmen fought hard and bad light forced an end to proceedings with a possible 22 overs still left to play.
The draw leaves Yorkshire in second place in Division Two. They are 28 points behind leaders Derbyshire but with a game in hand.
Andrew Gale was frustrated that 96 overs, a full day’s play, had been lost from a match that the Tykes dominated from session one on Wednesday: “I’ve been saying for weeks that it’s hard to win games of cricket in three days. We have done a couple of times, but to do it consistently is really hard work.”
“We were in an excellent position and if there was another day in the game we were in a fantastic position to go on and win the match. It’s disappointing, but I’m proud of the way the lads have played throughout the game. it’s becoming a regular occurrence now that we’re dominating games, we’re being more ruthless, we’re driving games forward and if we continue to play in that manner we’ll win games of cricket throughout the season.”
A big day for Gale’s side started on time with Northants stoic in defence as Ryab Sidebottom and Steve Patterson sought to prise open the victory door. The latter had to wait half-an-hour for the breakthrough which saw Peters (22) drive weakly at a Patterson delivery which crept through the gate.
Northants were progressing well and patience is always a virtue in these seanarios, but Azeem Rafiq eased nerves when he had Kyle Coetzer caught at bat and pad by Lyth for 39 to make the score 95-3. Yorkshire’s lead was 68.
By lunch Northants had progressed to 120-3 after accumulating 77 runs for the loss of two wickets in the morning session. They were still 43 runs behind and at the same rate would have to bat for much of the day to save the game.
White was dropped by Jaques, a very tough sharp chance at third slip, off Patterson when on 37 and Northants 144-3. Wakeley struck Rafiq straight for six and the visitors were only 9 behind.
Patterson then bowled White for 42 to end a partnership of 65 in 19 overs and Yorkshire’s hopes were lifted again. Andrew Hall (7) was caught behind off a rising Starc delivery and Alex Wakeley’s stern resistance finally faltered when he was beaten for pace and bowled by Starc for 66 in 144 balls with 6 fours and a six. At 198-6 Northants were 35 runs ahead and had 4 wickets left and there were just over 40 overs of the day left.
By tea we were left with 37 overs remaining and Northants had a lead of 42 runs with 4 wickets remaining.
In the third over after tea de Lange struck Rafiq high over mid-on and Starc made a pigs ear of running back and around to catch, only managing to get a finger to the chance. Next ball a bat and pad looped up and Ballance diving forward from silly point possibly should have got a hand underneath another missed effort.
After that de Lange and Murphy continued their rearguard which had reached a seventh wicket stand of 52 when the light failed the Yorkshire skipper with Northants 87 ahead with 22 overs remaining on the scoreboard. As each minute ticked by the equation got more bleak for Andrew Gale.
At 5.14pm the match was called off with Yorkshire taking 11 points from the drawn fixture. If whoever is in charge of the English weather could consider sending sunshine to Headingley the result would undoubtedly been different.
JAMES BUTTLER at HEADINGLEY
DAY THREE MATCH REPORT
It’s going to be a big day for Andrew Gale’s side tomorrow as they seek the 9 Northants wickets needed to force a third Championship win of the summer. Northants are 120 runs adrift of making Yorkshire bat again.
Northants faced a tricky 25 overs and were trailing by 163 runs when they started theire second knock at 5.28pm. The new ball had been good to Yorkshire in the Northants first innings – could it be again?
Starc replaced Sidebottom from the Rugby Stand End to bowl the seventh over and with his 4th ball (he got a wicket with his 5th in the first innings) he trapped James Middlebrook lbw for 9.
But with the light fading Andrew Gale was forced to turn to Rafiq and McGrath with 16 overs remaining to avoid an early finish. You couldn’t help wonder whether a little more attacking intent with the bat throughout the afternoon, when they added only 24 in 73 balls immediately after lunch, could have given Gale more options later in the day. Northants had persevered though and credit goes to the vistors for curbing Yorkshire’s progress.
Bad light finally won through with Northants 43-1 and 120 runs adrift it promises to be an interesting final day tomorrow. Stephen Peters on 20 and Kyle Coetzer on 12 will resume for the visitors.
Joe Root, stranded on 98 overnight, needed only three balls before angling Daggett through third man to reach hius first century at Headingley in 137 balls with his 11th four. Root then pushed the same bowler through midwicket for 3 which brought up the 100 stand for the 4th wicket with Jonny Bairstow. Bairstow then pushed a 3 as 200 came up on the one working scoreboard. An eventful first over of the day.
Root drove Daggett through extra cover shortly after pushing a quick single off Wakeley where a direct hit from White at point would have seen Bairstow short. But Bairstow survived and pushed Daggett to wid mid-on to bring up his fifty in 92 balls which had included 8 fours.
The Northants lead was only 12 when Root played a forcing shot to a ball that lifted from Hall and was well caught behind by Murphy for 125 from 161 balls. The 4th wicket partnership of 147 was ended and Gary Ballance joined Jonny Bairstow, who was 59 not out.
Yorkshire were slow to move on from their 244-4 at lunch and Bairstow eventually paid the price as he played across a full length ball from Hall and was bowled for 67 from 137 balls with 10 fours. Anthony McGrath took 14 balls to get off the mark, but when he did it was a sumptuous cut off Hall.
Yorkshire reached their third batting point, but immediately lost Ballance for 24 when he was caught by Wakeley off James Middlebrook. Progress had slowed considerably since the lunch interval. Azeem Rafiq got off the mark with a couple of fine boundaries against the spin of Con de Lange and Middlebrook.
Northants took the new ball after 84 overs with the Tykes 321-6. Rafiq whipped the first ball with the new cherry to the square leg fence and by tea the lead had stretched to 108 at 361-6.
Azeem Rafiq flashed at a short ball outside off-stump from Daggett in the second over after the resumption and was caught behind for 37 from 44 balls with 6 well struck boundaries. McGrath was lbw to Willey for 47 from 98 balls with 8 fours and Ryan Sidebottom (2) was caught at second slip by Peters off Daggett, who ended with 4-109.
The Tykes had lost 3 wickets for 11 runs in 6.3 overs and were still 21 runs short of the 5th batting bonus point. A mark not achieved since Old Trafford at the end of June 2010.
Starc (28*) and Patterson, who was bowled by Middlebrook for 10, added a quickfire 37 for the final wicket in 6.4 overs to steer the Tykes to maximum bonus points in the match and a lead of 163 runs with 25 overs remaining in the day.
JAMES BUTTLER at HEADINGLEY
DAY TWO MATCH REPORT
Yorkshire ended a rain reduced second day just 63 runs behind Northamptonshire with 7 wickets left in their first innings. Joe Root was unbeaten on 98 and alongside Jonny Bairstow (36*) had added 94 for the 4th wicket.
Play finally got underway on day two at 4pm after 56 overs had been lost to rain.
The Tykes resumed on 27-0 and were soon up an running as Adam Lyth and Joe Root took 10 runs from Andrew Hall’s opening over of the day. Lyth played a flowing forcing shot off Daggett in the next, but tried to cut the same bowler next ball and edged behind for 25. Phil Jaques (3) played across a full ball in Daggett’s next over and Yorkshire were 54-2.
Andrew Gale had made 17 when he played across a full delivery which may have kept a little low from Oli Stone. It was Stone’s maiden first-class wicket and brough Jonny Bairstow to the crease. The attack was far from Test class, but the brief seems to be to feel bat on ball ahead of the third Test at Edgbaston. But early on it was another England hopeful that stole centre stage.
Root had been missed by Hall at first slip when on 25, but was playing with typical straight batted style and tucked Hall through leg to move to his third Championship fifty of the summer off 89 deliveries with 3 fours. It was becoming a fine innings as he struck Hall down the ground and Daggett was pulled to the West Stand and cover drove with complete authority for boundaries four, five and six. Willey was pulled for four more.
Bairstow played second fiddle and reaclimatised himself by tackling an injury ravaged Northants attack, Root drove Willey through to the cover boundary twice as he moved into the 80s and his highest score for Yorkshire this summer.
Bairstow cut Hall behind square to bring up the 150 and then rocked back to despatch a short ball from the spin of James Middlebrook, introduced in the 38th over. Then the sweep was out as Bairstow moved towards top gear, but with few overs left he would have also had tomorrow morning on his mind.
Root, on 83 advanced on Middlebrook and was fortunate to be able to return home safely after Murphy sluffed the stumping chance.
With six balls remaining of the day Root pushed a single to retain the strike on 95 not out. He then ran Hall down to third man for 3 to close unbeaten two runs short of a third first-class century and his first at Headingley. Bairstow will resume tomorrow on 36 with the 4th wicket partnership unbroken on 94.
DAY ONE MATCH REPORT
Yorkshire ended a productive day on 27-0 in reply to Northamptonshire’s 253 all out. It was a tale of two new balls where the first reduced the vistors to 45-5 and the second finished them off.
After losing the toss and being asked to bowl Andrew Gale will be delighted to have seen the Northamptonshire innings reduced to 253.
Steve Patterson has been presented with his county cap ahead of play today. Patto celebrated by taking the new ball from the Kirkstall Lane End and Peters edged his third ball through fourth slip at catchable height for 4.
Patterson caught the edge again in his third over and this time Peters (7) was caught by Jaques at third slip. With the last ball of the tenth over Patterson struck again having Middlebrook lbw for 9.
Mitchell Starc replaced Sidebottom and, with his fifth ball in Championship, comprehensively bowled Alex Wakeley for a duck and after 45 minutes of play the Tykes had their first bonus point of the game at 21-3. Starc then trapped Rob White lbw and after losing the toss Yorkshire were enjoying their morning.
Patterson’s morning work was complete with figures of 8-1-23-2. He was replaced by Sidebottom who had success with the fifth ball of his second spell when he produced a snorter that held it’s line to Kyle Coetzer and was edged behind to Bairstow. 45-5.
Murphy, when on 25 and Northants were 94-5, edged Starc to Adam Lyth low to his left failed to hold a difficult chance at seconnd slip. A 76 stand for the sixth wicket was ended when Murphy edged a fired up Sidebottom behind for 40 in 102 balls with 4 fours and a six off Rafiq.
The seventh wicket hung around too. Hall on 45 was dropped by McGrath off Patterson when the score was 157-6. McGrath hit back when he had Con de Lange lbw for 23 to see the vistors 163-7, but Hall continued to prosper and with David Willey the pair more than held their own, prospering on anything wide.
Yorkshire took the new ball immediately after 80 overs and Willey drove at Sidebottom’s third ball which flew through the slips for 4. Would the second new ball reap the rewards the first did?
The answer was yes. Hall was bowled by Patterson for 79 in 179 balls with 10 fours. Willey was lbw to Sidebottom for 39 and Stone was bowled by Azeem Rafiq for a duck.
Sidebottom finished with 3-37 and the newly capped Patterson bagged 3-61, although he limped off five balls into his 19th over with what turned out to be cramp. It would have been a real shame to have spoiled a day he will forever remember fondly with anything more serious.
JAMES BUTTLER at HEADINGLEY
After a week away from LV= County Championship action, Yorkshire welcome Northamptonshire to Headingley between Wednesday and Saturday. Club President Geoffrey Boycott will officially open the new Club Shop on St Michael’s Lane at 1.15pm during the lunch interval on Wednesday. The Championship game is then followed by a CB40 match against the same opposition on Sunday.
As the Tykes sat out the last round of fixtures their rivals in the second tier took full advantage. Wins for Derbyshire, Kent, Hampshire and Northants saw Yorkshire slip to fourth position in the table, albeit with a game in hand on all other sides.
Northamptonshire are not to be underestimated. They beat Gloucestershire at home by 121 runs and are 6 points behind Yorkshire in fifth place. Their only other win this term was against Leicestershire and they have been beaten twice by Derbyshire and Kent in their opening two matches of the summer.
Yorkshire will be keen to maintain their unbeaten Championship run this season and regain ground at the top of the table.
Skipper Andrew Gale said: “We’re looking forward to the start of our County Championship home clash with Northants tomorrow and it’s a big few weeks for us in the competition before the Twenty20 break. Northants are a good, workmanlike side. They have a Yorkshire lad in Midders (James Middlebrook), who is doing well after being promoted to the top of the order with a ton last week and this week will be a big test for us.”
“We go into the game on the back of a comfortable win over Unicorns at Scarborough and for me, it was one of the best bowling displays we’ve produced for a long time in one-day cricket. We then finished the job off well with the bat. Gary Ballance is in the form of his life at the moment and looking like he’s something special, really.”
“It helped make up for the disappointing result at Sussex on Thursday where the bottom line was that we didn’t bowl well enough. I’d like to think we won’t bowl that badly again all season. After the game, we just decided to leave it behind and move on and I just said: ‘Let’s hit the ground running again on Sunday’ and that’s exactly what we did. That’s the sort of response you look for from your players, as captain.”
Yorkshire Members can claim 20% off their purchases from the new Club Shop on Wednesday to celebrate its official opening by Club President Geoffrey Boycott – he’s used to opening up. Geoffrey will be cutting the ribbon at 1.15pm on Wednesday.
Available on the gate priced at £15 for adults and £10 for concessions (Senior Citizens, Under-16s and Students with a valid NUS card). Under-12s are admitted free with an accompanying adult.
Andrew GALE (capt), Moin ASHRAF, Jonny BAIRSTOW (wk), Gary BALLANCE, Phil JAQUES, Adam LYTH, Anthony McGRATH, Steve PATTERSON, Richard PYRAH, Azeem RAFIQ, Joe ROOT, Ryan SIDEBOTTOM and Mitchell STARC.
Jonny Bairstow replaces Gerard Brophy from the squad announced Tuesday morning after being given permission to play by the ECB.
Azeem Rafiq is preferred to Adil Rashid and Mitchell Starc is set to make his Championship debut. Richard Pyrah returns to the Championship squad for the first time since breaking his left hand against Kent in the opening match of the season.
James Middlebrook, Stephen Peters, Kyle Coetzer, Alex Wakely, Rob White, Andrew Hall (capt), David Murphy (wk), Con de Lange, David Willey, Lee Daggett, Ollie Stone and David Burton.
Northants have lost David Sales to injury ahead of their County Championship match against Yorkshire. The former skipper has torn a hamstring and will be out for up to six weeks, which could rule him out of the entire Twenty20 campaign. He joins Chaminda Vaas, Jack Brooks, Rob Newton, Ben Howgego, Luke Evans and Sam Sweeney on Northants’ injury list. Sales was injured whilst running a quick single in the County Championship match against Gloucestershire.
OPPOSITION ONE TO WATCH
James Middlebrook was pivotal to Northamptonshire’s nailbiting victory over Gloucestershire last week. He took 5-63 in 44.2 overs with his final winning wicket coming just two minutes from the scheduled end of the match. The 35-year-old all-rounder is enjoying a career renaissance as an opening batsman. He scored 121 from 204 balls as a stand-in for the injured Rob Newton against Gloucestershire at the top of the order.
‘Midders’ debuted for Yorkshire in 1998 after progressing through the youth setup at the White Rose County and enjoyed a stint at Essex after being released by the Tykes in 2001. He moved to Wantage Road ahead of the 2010 season.