Report: Warwickshire v Worcestershire, LV= Insurance County Championship
Warwickshire and Worcestershire had to settle for solid points from a derby draw as their LV=Insurance County Championship match culminated in stalemate at Edgbaston.
The loss of the entire third day to rain left the contest beyond salvage as it drifted to a draw on the final day in the Birmingham sunshine.
Worcestershire, in reply to the home side’s 343 all out, declared their first innings on 364 for eight with Jack Haynes striking a career-best 87 (211 balls, 12 fours) and Ed Barnard making an unbeaten 76 (101 balls, ten fours).
The Bears then made 70 for three in their second innings before hands were shaken at ten to five. The draw leaves both sides still well in contention for a top-two finish in Group A at the halfway stage.
After Worcestershire resumed on the final on 198 for four, Tim Bresnan struck with the fifth ball of the day which Rikki Wessels edged to Sam Hain at second slip.
Ben Cox’s perky 23 was ended by an lbw decision from an Olly Hannon-Dalby in-ducker. The same bowler was then unlucky not to win another lbw shout against Haynes on 64, but the 20-year-old survived and continued to show impressive concentration.
Haynes, playing his first game of the season and only his 11th first class match, was within 13 runs of a deserved maiden century when he perished in the unluckiest fashion, run out at the non-striker’s end. Bowler Liam Norwell deflected a straight drive on to the stumps and Haynes was stranded inches short of his ground.
The wicket signalled a burst of belated aggression from the visitors as they sought another batting point. Alzarri Joseph hit his first ball, from Danny Briggs, for six, on the way to a brisk 17 before lifting the spinner to long on.
Ed Barnard completed his impressive match, adding an unbeaten half-century to his three wickets, before the declaration arrived with Worcestershire 21 ahead and 53 overs left in the match.
When Warwickshire went in again, Rob Yates soon nicked an unplayable ball from Joe Leach to the wicketkeeper. Pieter Malan moved fluently to 28 (31 balls) before edging Joseph’s fifth ball to second slip. Will Rhodes (25, 84 balls) sliced Joseph’s 30th ball to point, where Barnard took a fine diving catch. Hain (six not out in 50 minutes) and Matt Lamb then played out the remaining overs of a soporific day to the mellifluous chimes of an ice cream van vending its delicious wares to the good citizens of Balsall Heath.
Warwickshire and Worcestershire were frustrated at Edgbaston as rain washed out the third day of their LV= Insurance County Championship clash.
Play was abandoned for the day after a 2.45pm inspection, leaving a draw looks firm favourite with the game still only in its second innings going into the final day.
Worcestershire will resume on the final morning on 198 for four, in reply to the home side’s 343, and will look to Jack Haynes to build upon his career-best unbeaten 52.
On a pitch which appeared to get better for batting on day two, the final day is likely to bring only a tussle for bonus points which could be vital in the final table with Group A very tightly contested.
Warwickshire and Worcestershire look set for the 101th draw in their long LV= Insurance County Championship rivalry after dogged resistance from the visitors on the second day at Edgbaston.
In reply to 343, in which Michael Burgess struck 101 from 173 balls with nine fours and a six, Worcestershire closed on 198 for four, thanks principally to Jake Libby (74, 124 balls, 13 fours) and Jack Haynes (a career best 52 not out, 131 balls, six fours).
With the match less than halfway through its second innings at its halfway stage, and bad weather forecast for tomorrow, some spectacular cricket will be needed to force victory for either side.
After the Bears resumed on the second morning on 271 for seven, Burgess and Danny Briggs took their partnership to 51 from 17 overs, before Briggs (24, 60 balls, three fours) fell lbw to Josh Tongue.
Burgess batted watchfully at first, scoring just 20 in the first 55 minutes, but then galloped from 85 to 95 with a six (top-edged over the wicketkeeper) and a four off successive balls from Alzarri Joseph.
He reached his first century for Warwickshire from 169 balls but, two balls later, Liam Norwell, having batting carefully for half an hour to see Burgess through to three figures, was bowled by Joseph.
Olly Hannon-Dalby was immediately into his fluent stride, striking his first ball elegantly for four. The Yorkshireman was just 96 short of his maiden century when he cruelly ran out of partners when Burgess lifted Ed Barnard to Tom Fell at deep extra cover. The big-hearted Barnard finished with three for 76.
Warwickshire needed quick wickets to force the game forward but were thwarted by nuggety partnership of 38 in 15 overs, 46 in 16, 41 in 12 and 36 in 12.
Norwell made the first breakthrough when he trapped Daryl Mitchell lbw. Tom Fell edged Will Rhodes’ 13th ball, a wide, swinging half-volley, to wicketkeeper Burgess, but Libby batted with composure to keep his side from collapse. He was just 17 runs of completing 1,000 runs in his first ten first class games for Worcestershire when he turned Olly Stone of the face of the bat to Sam Hain at short leg.
Brett D’Oliveira nicked a Rhodes outswinger and fell to a fine catch by Burgess, diving in front of first slip, but Haynes advanced to his third first-class half-century.
Rob Yates’ second century in successive innings at Edgbaston lifted Warwickshire to 271 for seven against Worcestershire on the opening day of the LV= Insurance County Championship derby at Edgbaston.
The 21-year-old Bears academy product followed up his match-winning unbeaten 120 against Essex with a resolute 104 (229 balls, 14 fours).
His calm, compact batting held together an innings which was wobbling at 154 for four before he received support from Michael Burgess who ended the day still unbeaten on 65 (124 balls, eight fours).
Worcestershire’s bowlers maintained good pressure all day, led by two players – Joe Leach (19-4-51-2) and Brett D’Oliveira (22-3-31-2) – who made their first-class debuts in this fixture at Edgbaston nine years ago.
With paceman Josh Tongue playing his first game of the season following shoulder surgery, the visitors chose to bowl. They soon removed Will Rhodes, who nicked an away-cutter from Leach, before Yates and Pieter Malan added 77 in 23 overs.
Malan, making his debut, opened his Bears account with a pulled four off Tongue and looked in good nick, especially considering he came out of quarantine only five days ago, to help Yates take the score to 95 for one at lunch.
Malan (32, 74 balls, three fours) perished in infuriating fashion to the fifth ball of the afternoon session when he offered no shot to a ball from Ed Barnard which hit off stump. If the South African was annoyed with himself on departure, no less so was Sam Hain who grafted 49 minutes for eight but then missed a sweep at D’Oliveira and was bowled behind his legs.
Yates reached 50 in 87 balls but lost another partner when Matt Lamb (11, 33 balls) edged the impressive Leach to the keeper. That left the Bears 154 for four but Burgess batted positively as Yates advanced to his third first class century which arrived, from 200 balls, shortly after tea.
Yates fell when an attempt to cut D’Oliveira supplied Cox with his third catch. At 224 for five and, again, the day was evenly-poised. Tim Bresnan dug in alongside Burgess who posted his first half-century of the season (99 balls) when he smote Leach to the cover boundary, his sixth four.
The pair added 38 in 14 overs before Bresnan edged Barnard to Cox. After Tongue bowled Olly Stone in the closing overs, a day which was always finely balanced ended perfectly finely balanced.
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