Vishwa Fernando started his Yorkshire leaving party in the best way possible, with his stunning day one 5-30 from 10 overs bowling Derbyshire out for just 76 at Chesterfield before James Wharton’s maiden first-class century enhanced a memorable performance.

Sri Lankan Test fast bowler Fernando is playing the last of his three games in this season’s Vitality County Championship, and he claimed all five of his wickets either side of lunch in a 21-ball spell in which he didn’t concede a run.

Only two counties – Nottinghamshire for 59 in 2010 and Warwickshire for 69 in 2015 – have been bowled out for fewer by Yorkshire in Championship cricket since the turn of the century. 

Jordan Thompson played the role of Fernando’s wingman perfectly, returning 4-31 from 10.4. Derbyshire fell from 35-1 to 50-9, losing four wickets with the score on 45.

And all of this came after they won the toss and elected to bat first on a green-tinged pitch under an overcast sky.

Yorkshire’s pursuit of a second successive win in Division Two, having beaten Gloucestershire last week, was strengthened later on as they replied with 283-5 from 58 overs, a lead of 207. Wharton led the response with his second first-team century but his first against the red ball, ending the day unbeaten on a superb 116 off 125 balls with 19 fours and two sixes. Bad light ended play eight overs early, at 6.50pm.


Picture by John Heald. Yorkshire’s players celebrate with five-wicket star Vishwa Fernando.

Derbyshire actually made a steady start, all things considered.

After losing opener Mitch Wagstaff lbw to Ben Coad in the opening over – 2-1 – they reached 35-1 in the 15th over on a helpful pitch. Not only was there swing and seam on offer but signs of uneven bounce.

Brooke Guest and opener Luis Reece were involved in that 33-run second-wicket partnership, the highest of the innings, with Guest’s 17 its best individual score.

However, both men fell to successive deliveries from Fernando and then Thompson as the score fell to 35-3 in the 16th over. Reece was caught at first slip by George Hill off Fernando before Guest was bowled by Thompson.

Things got better for Yorkshire very quickly.

Derbyshire lost four wickets with the score on 45. 

Jordan Thompson

Picture by John Heald. Jordan Thompson was excellent with four wickets.

Fernando trapped Wayne Madsen and Aneurin Donald lbw with successive deliveries in the 19th over before Thompson did the same to home captain David Lloyd in the next.

Rain then interrupted play at 12.35pm with Derbyshire 45-6, bringing an early lunch.

But when play resumed just before 1.30pm, wickets continued to fall.

Fernando had Ross Whiteley brilliantly caught one-handed low down to his right by Thompson in the gully – 45-7 in the 21st over. 

Thompson then had Alex Thomson caught at third slip by Fin Bean with 49 on the board before Derbyshire’s ninth wicket fell on 50 in the 23rd when Fernando uprooted the middle stump of Sam Conners with an in-swinging yorker.

A 10th-wicket stand of 26 between Zak Chappell, who hit Thompson for a straight six, and South African overseas fast bowler Daryn Dupavillon added some respectability to the total. Though, in truth, not much.

Ben Coad

Picture by John Heald. Ben Coad made the initial breakthrough this morning.

And it was ended when Chappell edged Thompson to second slip, where Lyth held on before he set about strengthening Yorkshire’s case with bat in hand.

It took Yorkshire 19.1 overs to secure a lead, by which stage they were 77-2 in the final moments of the afternoon.

Derbyshire bowled with nowhere near as much discipline as Yorkshire had. The visitors were full and straight, a continuation of their ruthless display against Gloucestershire at Scarborough.

Yorkshire made three changes from that match. Out went Dom Bess, Will Luxton and Conor McKerr and in came Coad, captain Shan Masood and Dan Moriarty.

McKerr was actually named in the initial eleven at the toss but replaced by Matthew Revis having suffered a quad injury in the warm-ups. 

Lyth made 38, and it will be no surprise to hear that he drove nicely amongst his seven boundaries. Bean also hit seven boundaries but in 29. He was strong square on both sides of the wicket.

Picture by John Heald. James Wharton celebrates his maiden first-class century.

Unfortunately, both men departed before tea, with Bean trapped lbw by left-arm seamer Reece, who then had Lyth caught and bowled. 

Wharton was excellent. After settling at the crease following a tentative start, he was also strong on both sides of the wicket, but particularly through mid-on, where he worked or pulled a number of his boundaries en-route to a maiden fifty of the season in his fourth match.

By the time he got there, off 63 balls with 10x4s, Yorkshire had reached 165-4 after 37 overs.

Masood and Hill had both departed for 18 and 20. 

Masood was trapped lbw playing around one from Dupavillon and Hill was caught behind driving at Conners’ seam.

Shortly after Wharton reached 50, he lost Revis caught behind off Chappell 165-5 in the 38th over, a Yorkshire lead of 89. 


Picture by YCCC. The scene at Chesterfield before play this morning.

But the 23-year-old from Huddersfield, playing his 13th Championship match, ploughed on.

He pulled Dupavillon flat and hard over backward square-leg for the first of two sixes, the second slog-swept off Thomson’s off-spin to move him to 98.

By the time he reached his ton with a cover driven four off Reece, his 18th boundary, off 101 balls, Yorkshire were 245-5 in the 51st over with a lead of 169.

He and sixth-wicket partner Jonny Tattersall shared an unbroken 118 to end the day in the fashion it started. Tattersall will begin day two on 41.

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