By Graham Hardcastle, Paul Dyson and Jonathan Doidge.

Whatever happens against Essex at Chelmsford from Sunday onwards, and Yorkshire coach Andrew Gale is expecting a helter-skelter game, it surely won’t top last May’s Specsavers County Championship fixture there when the White Rose were bowled out for 50 in the first innings and still won.

A game which amazed everyone saw Yorkshire win by 91 runs inside three days, with second-innings centurion Harry Brook and six-wicket seamer Steve Patterson the stars.

Never mind this week, that kind of game will surely not happen again in the careers of everyone currently involved with the county.

“I hope not! I don’t think my nerves can handle a game like that again,” said Gale.

“It was bizarre. We had six out of the top eight who were all internationals as batters and all-rounders.

“So to get bowled out for 50 before lunch on the first day after winning the toss and batting was absolute madness.

“I was scratching my head, ‘How could this happen?’

“At one point I asked our driver if he could put my bag on the bus.”

But Yorkshire being bowled out for 50 was not the end of the drama – not by a long shot.

“I remember we had them two down at lunch and Joe Root said, ‘We’ve got a chance if we bowl them out for 150’,” recalled Gale, with Essex replying with 142 at tea.

With a deficit of 92, Yorkshire rolled the dice and sent Jonny Bairstow out to open the batting with Adam Lyth in a bid to counter-attack, which he did superbly with a pugnacious 50.

It meant, by the end of day one, Yorkshire were 161-2 with a lead of 69.

“It was Rooty’s idea to open with Jonny,” recalled Gale. “He got us level in no time and busted the game wide open.

“Harry Brook then got his first century and was outstanding (124 having dropped down to number three).

“I guess he’s not quite kicked on as we’d have liked since. But he showed what he can do. I’m sure, down the line, we will see that Harry Brook again.”

Brook’s century was the feature of Yorkshire’s second-innings 329 all out, helping to set a target of 238 late on day two before Patterson claimed a career best 6-40 in his first appearance of the season after a broken finger.

Essex, starting day three on 97-4, were bowled out for 146 inside 90 minutes of play, sealing the win.

Champions the season before, Essex had suffered their first Championship defeat since September 2016.

Gale said: “We ended up sat in a beer garden after the third day, not too long after lunch, reflecting on an unbelievable game and win.

“In years to come, the lads will sit down, reflect on that game and say, ‘Wow, how did that happen?’

“Patto, we’d brought him back early from a finger injury. He hadn’t really been passed fit, but he said he wanted to play. He went on and bowled brilliantly.

“They were in good form then and are now.

“Chelmsford’s a bit of a fortress for them. It seams and spins, and I would imagine this one will be a shortened game decided by who can bat best.”

Essex are currently second in the table having won their last three. They are 15 points behind leaders Somerset.

Yorkshire are sat third after their superb win over Surrey at Scarborough. They are 21 points behind Essex and 36 behind Somerset with six games remaining.

Team news

Harry Brook comes in for Jack Leaning with David Willey missing out for personal reasons.

All the club’s professionals are back into cricket practice from next week.

Matthew Waite continues his rehab and integration into Second XI cricket next week.

Jared Warner (side) is looking to get back into Second XI cricket next week and should be in contention to work on his match fitness.

12-man squad to face Essex at Chelmsford.

Gary Ballance
Harry Brook
Tom Kohler-Cadmore
Ben Coad
Will Fraine
Matthew Fisher
Adam Lyth
Keshav Maharaj
Duanne Olivier
Steven Patterson ©
Jonathan Tattersall (W)
Jordan Thompson

The thoughts of Graham Hardcastle

Yorkshire are not favourites to win the title, and it would be a surprise if they did given the stage of this talented squad’s development. But, make no mistake, they are very much in the hunt for their third crown in six years.

The win over Surrey at Scarborough earlier this week was the type of win which champion teams produce. Surrey, 157-2 just before tea on day four chasing 318, were favourites at that stage. But the loss of three wickets in five balls allowed Yorkshire to open the door. In the end, they’d blown its hinges off, with Duanne Olivier claiming the last two wickets, sealing the win with only 10 balls to spare. A big player for a big moment!

Essex should be a fascinating contest. They are on a run of three straight wins, second in table and have high hopes of overhauling leaders Somerset.

The Chelmsford pitch is expected to make for a fast paced game which off-spinner Simon Harmer should excel in. Mind you, don’t underestimate Keshav Maharaj. He was excellent at Scarborough, returning 3-69 from 33 overs, bowling more than a third of the day’s allotted 96.

I actually don’t think there’s any pressure on Yorkshire during a fortnight which sees them face Somerset as well. Not expected to win the title, they can go and have a go and see where it takes them.

The thoughts of Jonathan Doidge

Olivier to Batty…gone! He’s been caught by Adam Lyth! Wow… What a finish to an enthralling four days of cricket at Scarborough we’ve just witnessed. From Will Fraine’s maiden first class ‘ton’, to Ben Coad’s sensational delivery to take out Ben Foakes’ off stump, to Surrey veteran Ricky Clarke’s interplay with the crowd, plus some fabulous fielding, this was a great showcase for the four-day game. b

Barely has the ‘Scarbados’ tide had time to go out there than we’re off to Chelmsford for a clash with the team that is one place higher up the championship table in second. From the commentary box, my colleagues and I felt that Yorkshire would probably have won last month’s Headingley fixture between the teams, had the weather not so regularly intervened. Frustrating. The 2017 champions have hit a bit of form since then and, while Steve Patterson’s men have suffered a first championship defeat, they got back on the horse on the east coast and should now have confidence fully restored.

Chelmsford’s pitch should provide some turn, so Keshav Maharaj will again have a big part to play, and this match looks set to be a fierce battle between two talented teams. It was the scene of an extraordinary contest last season, including Harry Brook’s maiden hundred, and Yorkshire will want one of their rank to come up with the same this time as they try to set things up for back-to-back successes.

Match statistics

  • Essex’s highest total in these matches is 622 for eight declared at Headingley in 2005 but Yorkshire’s is 555 for one declared at Leyton in 1932. Essex is one of only two counties, Somerset being the other, who have scored 600 against Yorkshire without their opponents ever reaching 600 in reply.
  • The 2018 match at Chelmsford witnessed Yorkshire’s lowest-ever total in Essex – 50. Their host’s lowest at home against Yorkshire is 30 scored at Leyton in 1901.
  • In 1932 at Leyton Herbert Sutcliffe scored 313 against Essex but Essex’s highest individual innings against Yorkshire is 219 not out by Doug Insole at Colchester in 1949.
  • Sutcliffe’s triple-century was scored in the then world record stand of 555 for any wicket with Percy Holmes. Their stand was for the first wicket and Essex’s highest partnership against Yorkshire is 246 for the second wicket by John Stephenson and Paul Prichard at Colchester in 1991.
  • Yorkshre’s best-ever match bowling analysis against any opponent occurred in Essex. Hedley Verity took 17 for 91 at Leyton in 1933. Essex’s best against Yorkshire is 14 for 127 achieved by Walter Mead in 1899, also at Leyton.

Specsavers County Championship Division One table

Specsavers County Championship Division One statistics

Potential milestones

Potential batting milestones in Essex v Yorkshire on 7th Jul 2019

  • T Westley needs 10 runs to reach 3500 runs in First-class matches at Chelmsford
  • TT Bresnan needs 21 runs to reach 6500 runs in First-class matches
  • SR Harmer needs 24 runs to reach 500 runs in First-class matches at Chelmsford
  • A Lyth needs 27 runs to reach 10500 runs in First-class matches
  • JA Leaning needs 45 runs to reach 3000 runs in First-class matches
  • AN Cook needs 51 runs to reach 4000 runs in First-class matches at Chelmsford
  • BO Coad needs 60 runs to reach 500 runs in First-class matches
  • V Chopra needs 92 runs to reach 1500 runs in First-class matches at Chelmsford
  • T Kohler-Cadmore needs 99 runs to reach 3000 runs in First-class matches
  • T Westley needs 125 runs to reach 500 runs in First-class matches against Yorkshire
  • WAR Fraine needs 133 runs to reach 500 runs in First-class matches
  • NLJ Browne needs 143 runs to reach 2500 runs in First-class matches at Chelmsford
  • JA Porter needs 146 runs to reach 500 runs in First-class matches
  • JM Bairstow needs 148 runs to reach 11500 runs in First-class matches
  • DJ Willey needs 150 runs to reach 2500 runs in First-class matches

Potential bowling milestones in Essex v Yorkshire on 7th Jul 2019

  • TT Bresnan needs 2 wickets to reach 550 wickets in First-class matches
  • SA Patterson needs 3 wickets to reach 400 wickets in First-class matches
  • RS Bopara needs 7 wickets to reach 100 wickets in First-class matches at Chelmsford
  • JE Root needs 10 wickets to reach 50 wickets in First-class matches
  • BO Coad needs 10 wickets to reach 150 wickets in First-class matches

Yorkshire’s County Championship Statistics

Yorkshire v Essex stats

The opposition

  • Head coach: Anthony McGrath
  • Captain: Ryan ten Doeschate
  • 2018: CC 3rd in Div 1, RL50 QF, T20 7th in South

County champions of 2017, Essex made a solid if not spectacular defence of their crown last summer and were in a fairly unique position in Division One – they didn’t challenge top dogs Surrey but were never in relegation danger.

Essex were actually the only side to beat Surrey in Championship cricket, ending their hopes of an unbeaten season during the final round at the Oval.

Sir Alastair Cook is a notable returnee to county cricket full time, while Peter Siddle has signed a two-year overseas deal at Chelmsford. Fellow Aussie Adam Zampa, the leg-spinner, has re-signed for T20.

Essex were beaten twice at home by Yorkshire last year; in the Championship and the RL50 quarter-finals.

Batsman Dan Lawrence has all the ability to be a star of the future.


  • 1894-2019

    Correct to June 30th, 2019

Played Essex won Surrey won Drawn Abandoned
Official County Championship 1890- 164 27 85 52 2
Non-Championship matches 2 0 2 0 0
Totals 166 27 87 52 2

Highest innings totals

Essex 622-8dec Headingley 2005

At home 521 Leyton 1905

Yorkshire 555-1dec Leyton 1932

At home 516 Scarborough 2010

Lowest innings totals

Essex 30 Leyton 1901

Away 52 Harrogate 1900

Yorkshire 31 Huddersfield 1935

Away 50 Chelmsford 2018

Highest individual innings

Essex 219* DJ Insole Colchester 1949
Away 207* ME Waugh Middlesbrough 1990
Yorkshire 313 H Sutcliffe Leyton 1932
At home 263 M Leyland Hull 1936

Highest wicket partnerships

Essex 246 2nd JP Stephenson (116) & PJ Prichard (128) Colchester 1991

Yorks 555 1st P Holmes (224*) & H Sutcliffe (313) Leyton 1932

NOTE: This was a world record for any wicket and stood as such for the first wicket for 44 years.

Best bowling in an innings

Essex 8-44 FG Bull Bradford 1896

At home 8-57 CJ Kortright Leyton 1900

Yorkshire 9-28 W Rhodes Leyton 1899

At home 9-121 WE Bowes Scarborough 1932

Best bowling in a match

Essex 14-127 (7-37 & 7-90) W Mead Leyton 1899

Yorkshire 17-91 (8-47 & 9-44) H Verity Leyton 1933

At home 14-68 (6-40 & 8-28) W Rhodes Harrogate 1900

NOTE: The performance by Verity is the best for Yorkshire against any opponent.

Most dismissals in an innings by a wicket-keeper

6 (6 ct) BJ Hyam Essex Scarborough 1998

Most dismissals in a match by a wicket-keeper

8 (8 ct) BJ Hyam Essex Scarborough 1998

8 (8 ct) JS Foster Essex Chelmsford 2017

Most catches in an innings by a fielder

5 AB Sellers Yorkshire Leyton 1933

Most catches in a match by a fielder

7 AB Sellers Yorkshire Leyton 1933

A century and five wickets in an innings in the same match

108* & 0; 5-40 & 2-28 C White Yorkshire Headingley 1994

146; 4-17 & 7-37 MS Nichols Essex Huddersfield 1935

Last time out



  • First innings 142 all out
  • Second innings 146 all out


  • First innings 50 all out
  • Second innings 329 all out

Yorkshire win by 91 runs


Yorkshire secured a stunning Specsavers County Championship victory over champions Essex at Chelmsford as they comfortably defended a 238 target to win by 91 runs.

Essex started day three on 97-4 and were bowled out for 146 inside 90 minutes of play.

They even lost four wickets in 23 balls without addition to slip from 114-4 to 114-8 to all but end their chances of victory, with Ben Coad taking three of them.

Steve Patterson finished with career best figures of 6-40 from 18 overs in his first match of the season having suffered a broken finger last month.

Yorkshire take 19 points from their second win in four this summer, and it happened having been bowled out for 50 in the first innings.

This was Essex’s first defeat in the Championship since being beaten here by Glamorgan in September 2016, and they take just three points.

For Yorkshire, this was their lowest first-innings winning total for 96 years when they beat Sussex at Hove in 1922 having been bowled out for 42.

Around the grounds

Division One

Hampshire v Warwickshire (Day 1, Ageas Bowl)

Stand-in opener Ian Holland (118) and Aneurin Donald (100) have reached unbeaten centuries for the hosts who are 336 for 4. They have so far added 161. Sam Northeast made 59 and Olly Stone has taken two wickets.

Somerset v Nottinghamshire (Taunton)
Craig Overton is added to leaders’ Somerset’s squad as they look to extend their 15-point lead at the top against bottom of the table Notts. The visitors are without Stuart Broad, whose workload is being managed ahead of the Ashes. Academy all-rounder Liam Patterson-White could make his first-class debut after impressing in the second XI while Zak Chappell, Jake Libby, Luke Wood and Matthew Carter are added to the squad beaten by Essex.

Surrey v Kent (Kia Oval)
Rory Burns returns for Surrey after missing the defeat to Yorkshire but they are still without eight players because of World Cup commitments or injuries. Ollie Pope had his first net since shoulder surgery on Friday but ready to return yet.
Kent’s 13-man squad is unchanged with Fred Klaasen and Mitch Claydon added to the team which drew with Warwickshire last week.

Essex v Yorkshire (Chelmsford)
Second-placed Essex are likely to be unchanged after winning five of their seven games so far. Batsmen Nick Browne and Tom Westley both signed new contracts this week. For the visitors, Harry Brook comes in for Jack Leaning while all-rounder David Willey misses out for personal reasons.

Division Two

Leicestershire v Durham (Leicester)
All-rounder Tom Taylor has been ruled out for the hosts so Gavin Griffiths and Callum Parkinson will compete for starts. Durham have no fresh injury worries and could select the side which drew with Lancashire in the last round of games.

Middlesex v Gloucestershire (Merchant Taylor’s School)
Bottom of the table Middlesex, who haven’t finished last in the Championship since it started in 1890, look to start a climb up the table. Steven Finn has a niggle and will be replaced by Tom Barber while Jack Davies makes way for Robbie White, who has returned from a loan spell with Essex. Gloucestershire are at full strength.

Northamptonshire v Lancashire (Northampton)
Fresh from their record win over Sussex, Northants are likely to be unchanged. James Anderson (calf) and Liam Livingstone (side) are absent for Lancashire, but Tom Bailey returns after a knee injury and Richard Gleeson is due to face his former county.

Worcestershire v Derbyshire (Kidderminster)
Wayne Madsen returns to the Derbyshire squad after missing their draw against Middlesex with injury and Tom Lace, who wasn’t allowed to play against his parent county, is also named in a 13-man squad. Worcestershire are still without Wayne Parnell but have no other injury concerns as Derbyshire visit Chester Road for the first time for 20 years.

Ways to follow

  • Ball-by-ball BBC Radio Commentary…

Live commentary

  • Via the club’s match centre below, including live stream…

Match centre


Outlook – Saturday

More in the way of cloud tomorrow, but there will still be some sunny spells and it should remain another essentially dry day. Cooler than recent days however.

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