Category Archives: Yorkshire
Andy Wilson watched Lancashire take on Warwickshire at Old Trafford while Richard Gibson saw newly promoted Northants travel to Headingley to play Yorkshire
We’ve reached stumps at Old Trafford and Headingley. Yorkshire closed on 328/7, while Warwickshire are 63/0 in reply to Lancashire’s total of 247 all out. Both games are set to resume tomorrow.
Gary Ballance has his fourth hundred in five County Championship appearances for Yorkshire, who have recovered well from a precarious earlier position of 57-3.
Although Alex Lees failed to convert his half-century – falling for 90 in the hour after tea – the 24-year-old progressed his chanceless innings to three figures soon afterwards and the home team have made good the brave decision by Andrew Gale to bat first.
Andy Wilson reports:
Alastair Cook hopes to create a new partnership with England’s restored coach Peter Moores that can be as effective for England as Michael Clarke and Darren Lehmann have been for Australia, and has knocked back suggestions that Andy Flower will remain the power behind the throne.
Moores spoke of using his predecessor Flower as “a sounding board” following his move to a new job with the England and Wales Cricket Board as the technical director of elite coaching, but Cook acknowledged the need to make a “clean break” from the Flower era which ended in a 5-0 Ashes defeat.
Gary Ballance has gone through the gears here at Headingley and is about to overtake his fourth-wicket partner Alex Lees despite having batted for 26 overs fewer. Mainly due to the fact that Lees got bogged down as soon as he reached his half-century: dropped at slip by Andrew Hall of Maurice Chambers, he also survived a stumping chance after a horrible slog at James Middlebrook’s off-spin.
Ballance has been the more attractive of the two young left-handers and has progressed to 60 not out, eight runs in arrears of his partner. Both have Test aspirations and Ballance effectively has a place to lose following his debut in Sydney earlier this year. He has started the season intent on fighting for his spot on the evidence so far. Having forced his way in via weight of runs – he topped the scoring charts in Division One last summer – the 24-year-old began with 77 last week at Taunton.
An interesting morning at Old Trafford, on and off the field. Lancashire would probably have settled for 85 for two having won the toss and chosen to bat, although it could be better, Andrea Agathangelou (usual spelling) having thrown away his wicket in the last over before lunch, driving at a wide length ball from Chris Woakes and edging a catch to Tim Ambrose.
Having said that, Agathangelou had survived a couple of scares on his way to a handy 48 from 62 balls. Warwickshire were convinced he should have gone caught behind off Chris Wright on 13, and he was dropped by Ambrose on 40 off Oliver Hannon-Dalby, although that was a difficult chance off the inside edge from a ball that bounced more than anything else all session.
Some non-match news for you from Headingley: Joe Root has just spent five minutes of fielding practice on the outfield with Yorkshire’s director of cricket Martyn Moxon. He has been catching and throwing a cricket ball, which is progress from where he was just a couple of days ago. Up until then it was tennis balls only in fielding drills. He was noticeably wary while going through his drills but, having tested his right thumb against all types of bowlers in the nets over the past week, it suggests he is on target to return to action against Middlesex at Lord’s a week today. After shattering it it in eight places while scoring a hundred against West Indies last month, it was hoped he would be fit to get himself into contention for England’s first one-day international of the summer – against Scotland in Aberdeen on May 9.
Back on the field, and Yorkshire have suffered further discomfort, with the loss of Kane Williamson, trapped on the crease by the veteran nibbler Andrew Hall. With wicketkeeper David Murphy stood up, the South African displayed a threat from the off and struck in his first over after twice beating the outside edge. Andrew Gale has joined Alex Lees and there is work to do from a position of 39-2.
The pewter grey skies have opened twice inside the first hour at Headingley, interrupting Yorkshire’s progress. They have managed 16 for the loss of Adam Lyth in the seven overs that have been sent down: Azharullah, who knows the area well after spells with East Bierley in the Bradford League and Shelley in the Huddersfield competition, getting one to nip away from a challenging line.
Given the conditions, the decision by Yorkshire captain Andrew Gale to bat first is a brave one. They are very similar to 12 months ago when Sussex, inspired by Chris Jordan, dismissed them for 96. The challenge revealed itself without a run on the board when Maurice Chambers hot the shoulder of Lyth’s bat and watched the ball balloon over the slips.
There can’t have been many Easter Sundays that have featured County Championship cricket at Old Trafford. A distinguished Midlands journalist has already warned us that Warwickshire’s travelling support may be reduced by those attending church. However a few hundred hardy folk have preferred to watch Chapple.
Lancashire’s captain marvel returns to the team after missing their opening defeat at Nottinghamshire with a hamstring niggle, and has won the toss – which was televised live by Sky Sports News, and conducted by Dominic Cork, the last seamer to play first-class cricket at the age of 40 before Chapple in this game.
With only two months to go until the world’s greatest cycle race starts in the Dales, there is a growing sense that the event could prove to be a ‘game changer’ for the county
It has to be among the most unlikely things for a Parisian to say. “Yorkshire,” according to Christian Prudhomme, “is very sexy. It’s cool.”
Tell that to Geoffrey Boycott. But according to Gary Verity, the man who persuaded the director of the Tour de France to bring it to God’s own county, that was Prudhomme’s parting shot when the two men shook hands at the end of his decision-making visit.