A first-innings analysis of 5-39 by Moin Ashraf, above, and 53 from Jack Hughes were Yorkshire’s highlights in a difficult match at Barnsley where they went down by 112 runs to Leicestershire in the Second Eleven Championship.
DAY 1: It was to be expected that this would be a difficult game for the Seconds as Leicestershire had revealed their hand in their team selection the previous day in the Trophy match at Headingley. Eleven of the 12 selected are listed as staff players compared to Yorkshire’s three – and the 12th was Amar Rashid, look-alike brother of Adil.
So it was to prove. The visitors elected to bat, and there were two shining lights: opener Tom New took part in six partnerships while compiling a century and more, and Rashid, joining him in the last of those partnerships which accrued 111 runs the dreaded Nelson! remained unbeaten. Yet the Foxes ended two short of the 300 final target for batting bonus points.
This was due to the exceptional bowling of Moin Ashraf, who took the last four wickets for eight runs he had taken Pope’s wicket earlier to gain his first five-for in the Championship. That performance would surely have earned the headline Volcanic Ashraf grounds Foxes’ flights of fancy! in the redtops.
Thanks to Yorkshire’s bowling rate - Azeem Rafiq sent down 29 overs in two spells – Yorkshire had 50 minutes of batting to the close. Harry Gurney – no relation of Uncle Tom Cobley’s pal – struck twice, trapping Joe Root leg-before and having Callum Geldart caught by Jigar Naik before 10 runs had been scored. Charlie Roebuck and Hughes steadied the ship, and there was no more success for the bowlers that night.
DAY 2: The Yorkshire innings ended 20 minutes after lunch – a solid half-century by Hughes the only highlight as less than 100 runs were added to the overnight total. There were two stands of note: Roebuck and Hughes put on 41 together, and Hughes and Rafiq added 75. Not one of the other eight partnerships made it to double figures.
Naik accounted for Hughes, and Naik took three of the last four wickets to fall to finish with 4-27. A lead of 158.
It was expected that Leicestershire would pile on the runs and declare when an unreachable target had been set – but there were surprises in store. At 59-7 the Foxcubs’ planned assault had come unstuck: Jack Hargreaves had 3-12, James Lee two wickets and Ben Sanderson one, a run-out accounting for the seventh. The boot appeared to be on the other foot.
Only one more wicket was captured in the evening session…it seemed that the ball was back in Leicestershire’s court.
DAY 3: It took 20 minutes to finish Leicestershire off - and the last three partnerships had added more than 90 runs when Nadeem Malik, the visiting captain, was last man out one short of a half-century. Yorkshire’s target was 311 in a minimum of 88 overs.
A scoring rate under four an over was eminently achievable. Or was it?
Jigar Naik had other ideas: he had Callum Geldart trapped leg-before in the remains of the morning session; he had Joe Root caught in the leg trap; he caught and bowled Hughes, and he dismissed Lee Hodgson lbw before the tea interval. 152-5. By now the required rate was a shade under a run a ball, and unlikely to be achieved. The only hope was to bat out for a draw.
Leicestershire ran through the last five wickets in 50 minutes - Naik taking three m
Next on the Seconds’ agenda is a one-day 40-over match against Durham at Weetwood on Monday, with each innings split into two phases of 20 overs. It is being given a trial this summer as the basis of a knockout cup for Second Elevens. The match, which starts at 12 noon, is in the preliminary round, the winners going through to Round 1 proper and a visit to Lancashire at Neston the following Monday.
Second XI Championship Yorkshire v Leicestershire
Tuesday, May 18 2010 (11:00) at Shaw Lane, Barnsley