Yorkshire Seconds have shown improvements both as a team and as individuals in 2013 – moving up the table of all three of their formats – Coach Paul Farbrace told them as rain washd out Day 3 of their closing “friendly” match against Durham at Weetwood.
For once the weather forecast was spot on, and the match was abandoned at the overnight score just after lunch with no further play possible. It was the end of the Seconds’ season, and Paul invited all players and backroom staff into the changing room for a final summing-up.
He reminded all players of the improvements that they had shown and improved team performances before he turned to the other coaches – Ian Dews and Richard Damms – with thanks for their invaluable input in 2013…there was also a word for “unsung hero” Howard Clayton, the Seconds Scorer and YCCC Website Correspondent: Paul said Howard’s comments were very much valued and appreciated.
So now begins the long football season…and the countdown to April when the show hits the road again.
Day 2: Karl Carver (Gallery Picture) led the way for Yorkshire with 3-69 before they ended the day 62 runs ahead with nine second-innings wickets standing.
Play began on time at 10.15am after a curtailed Day 1, and Yorkshire continued their first innings until lunch, when they declared at 206-8. Skipper Richard Pyrah went on to 51, with eight fours and a six, and Jack Leaning was second-top-scorer with a solid 42 in 70 deliveries with five fours. Josh Shaw enjoyed himself with 31 not out in 41 balls, with four fours and a straight-driven six.
This was a good recovery from Yorkshire’s 21-3 of 24 hours earlier, Will Rhodes adding only a couple to his overnight 21 not out. Leaning and Shaw came together to add 44 for the eighth wicket and the 200 was passed, which had not looked possible the day before.
Durham began cautiously after lunch against the seamers, and they had just begun to get going when Carver and Azeem Rafiq were introduced. Each took a wicket, and Durham on 77-2 had two new batsmen at the crease. A short, sharp shower arrived during the tea interval, but play eventually got under way again.
Durham batted on quickly, and finally declared at 177-4 with Carver, fresh from his career-best last week against Middlesex, again leading the way with 3-69 from 17 overs. A short interruption caused by rain and bad light forced the players off with Yorkshire on 20-0, led by Andrew Hodd ‘s 18 not out, including three fours.
Astonishingly, play was resumed with 10 minutes remaining, and Yorkshire lost Hodd for 24 in 17 deliveries with four fours, leaving Alex Lees and Dan Hodgson to see their side through to the close on 33-1, an overall lead of 62.
Day 1: Captain Richard Pyrah (Gallery Picture) and Will Rhodes pulled things round for Yorkshire before rain ended a day, which began under heavy skies as the hosts Yorkshire won the toss and decided to bat.
They were soon in trouble at 21-3 as Alex Lees, 4, Andy Hodd, 0, and Dan Hodgson, 6, came and went. The strip, which had been used before, was certainly encouraging bowlers rather than batsman, so it was good to see Rhodes, 21 not out, and Pyrah, 26 not out, add an unbroken fourth-wicket stand of 47 before the second rain interruption brought an early lunch.
I had to score this game by myself for the 15.1 overs of play possible as my Durham colleague, Richard Hilton, had to stand at square-leg at both ends – only one umpire, Ismail Dawood, had turned up.
Frantic telephone calls to the ECB eventually resulted in a solution. An umpire from Derbyshire was summoned: he duly arrived, but he did not officiate at all as play was called off at 5pm.
The Second Eleven scores are available via Total Cricket Live Scores, thanks to scorer and Yorkshire County Cricket Club website correspondent HOWARD CLAYTON:
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Words and Statistics: HOWARD CLAYTON