Yorkshire and Derbyshire have played against each other in more List A matches at Chesterfield (21) than at Derby (16). The two counties met for the first time in a one-day game in Derbyshire in 1970, that fixture being at Chesterfield in the John Player League, and it was not until 1981 that the County Ground hosted such a match. Paul Dyson looks back at an encounter with a close finish just ten years ago.
August 8, 2010 at Chesterfield: Yorkshire 276-6 in 40 overs (JA Rudolph 105, A Lyth 91, GG Wagg 3-56); Derbyshire 268-8 in 40 overs (WL Madsen 65, CF Hughes 54). Yorkshire won by eight runs.
This match was in the first season of the Clydesdale Bank 40 and this competition had three groups of seven teams with each team playing 12 matches – one home and one away against each of the other six. The 18 counties were joined by the Netherlands, Scotland and the Unicorns (a team made up of amateur cricketers). Derbyshire came into this match having won two and lost five, including a 100-run defeat to Yorkshire at Headingley, whereas the visitors were in tremendous form and had played seven, won seven.
Australian Chris Rogers, Derbyshire’s captain, decided to field on winning the toss but he could only watch as his opposite number, Andrew Gale, and Jaques Rudolph put together an opening stand of 79 from only 69 balls. Gale was caught of the left-arm medium-paced bowling of Graham Wagg for 27 but when Adam Lyth joined Rudolph not only was the run-rate maintained, the pair made the punishment last almost twice as long, i.e. their partnership was worth 144 from 134 balls. Having struck 11 fours and a six in his 105 from 107 balls, Rudolph, who had batted with ‘meticulous brilliance’ (Yorkshire CCC Yearbook) departed at 223 for two. In complete contrast Jonny Bairstow lasted just one ball, Tim Groenewald claiming both wickets, but Anthony McGrath shared a useful stand with Lyth before the latter was caught in the deep off Wagg for 91 from 81 balls, an innings which included nine fours and two sixes and was ‘quite superb’ (Ibid.) Although three wickets fell in the last six overs, 53 runs were scored, McGrath leading the way with a dynamic and undefeated 31 from a mere 17 balls. Wagg finished with three for 56 but Groenewald had conceded only 42 runs from his eight overs.
Derbyshire, therefore, had a target of almost seven runs per over and it looked even more daunting when Rogers was run out in the second over. Chesney Hughes, who had earlier dropped Rudolph in the slips when on only 11, batted positively and both he and Wayne Madsen scored better than a run-a-ball half-centuries. Madsen and Wes Durston shared a stand of 74 from 66 balls but Steve Patterson took the wickets of each of the two top-scorers, including Madsen to a switch-hit which went straight to Lyth, and this left the scoreboard showing 189 for five, meaning the requirement was now 80 from 51 balls. Garry Park and Wagg both batted usefully and quickly but the visitors were never quite in control of their own destiny, especially when the eighth wicket fell and 33 were needed from 11 balls, and ended up nine runs short of victory. Anthony McGrath chipped in with two wickets but Patterson’s two for 39 from his eight overs had kept the brakes on at a crucial stage of the innings.