County cricket: Northants v Surrey, Warwickshire v Somerset – live | County Championship

Key events

Worrall plodding slowly back to his mark at Wantage Road, irritated by a really quite classy off drive for four by Williams. Frustration building for Surrey and the sky is hanging heavy with great mucky clouds. Northants 358-7.

England’s T20 side have landed in Karachi –a year late after the 2021 cancellation debacle – England’s first tour of Pakistan for 17 years.

A smiling Jos Buttler.
England T20 captain Jos Buttler takes a press conference in Karachi. Photograph: Fareed Khan/AP

If you squint here, Buttler could be sitting on a throne:

Jos Buttler: “The passion that Pakistani people have for cricket is fantastic. We’re delighted to be here. We are aware (the country is) going through a tough time with the flooding. Sport has a great power to unite people and give focus to that.” pic.twitter.com/FbhZL4pJUY

— Richard Gibson (@richardgibsonDM) September 15, 2022

Impressive, Northants. Zaib and Williams lace up, and bat on. Northants: 342 for seven, the lead 260 – though the clock is the important thing.

Brothers making maiden first-class centuries in the same season (doing so in the County Championship):

RE Foster/WL Foster 1899
GJ Bryan/JL Bryan 1920
HW Parks/JH Parks 1928
AS Rollins/RJ Rollins 1995
SM Curran/TK Curran 2022@backandacross @oldmanradd

— Andrew Samson (@AWSStats) September 15, 2022

Just grabbing some lunch – back shortly.

Names in the frame for the England Chairman of selectors job (which was advertised last week): Nick Knight, Steven Finn, Alec Stewart.

Lunchtime scores

The County Ground: Northants 339 and 327-7 v Surrey 421

Edgbaston: Warwickshire 196 and 56-1 v Somerset 219 and 340-7dec

Headingley: Essex 225 and 162-9 BEAT Yorkshire 134 and 252 by one wicket.

DIVISION TWO

Grace Road: Durham 296 and 108-3 BEAT Leicestershire 202 and 108-3 by seven wickets.

Lord’s: Middlesex 390 and 45-0 BEAT Glamorgan 214 and 220

Hove: Sussex 220 and 152-3 v Worcestershire 438-5dec

In the remaining Division Two game, Sussex trail Worcestershire by 72 with seven wickets left. A quick-step 55 not out for Tom Alsop.

At Wantage Road, Northants are almost a third of the way to their target (survival). The lead 239 and only two wickets lost to the might of the Surrey attack and the new ball: 321-7. Sibley and Davies hunkering down for Warwickshire: 55 for one.

I have received an email from Harvey of “delicious pumpkin recipes for your readers to try in autumn.” If anyone would like a recipe for roasted pumpkin on sourdough, loaded pumpkin fries or pumpkin and sweet potato rosti – just let me know.

A man carries a pumpkin through a field.
The 2023 Dukes ball. Photograph: Cheney Orr/Reuters

This was Durham’s interim head coach Neil Killeen on Matthew Potts yesterday:

“Matthew (Potts) has been outstanding, to take a match CB in this game is fantastic. It is credit to the bowler he has been all summer, he has done that from start to finish. But to be honest he couldn’t have done that today without the whole bowling group putting the hard work in around him to enable him to keep attacking and keep taking those wickets. I’m proud of the whole group.

“As a young bowler he has potential to get better still, of course he has. Over the last few years he has got stronger, fitter, faster and he has now learned his game and he deserves every success he has got this year.

“He was never going to play every game for England this summer and he was really keen to come back and bowl some overs for us in hopefully what is preparation for the Pakistan tour later in the year.”

Re the discussion BTL on the High Performance Review – there was a hint that counties could be rewarded for more than performance – see page 34: “Potential reward based on impact: performance, inspiring generations, talent development etc to align with English cricket objectives.” I suspect this is reward in terms of money rather than points – but more will become clear. Possibly.

Read the review here.

A wicket at Edgbaston …. Rob Yates sent on his way lbw to Sajid Khan. Warwicks 30-1. Don’t hate me but …this is Somerset’s, isn’t it?

County chairs’ meeting postponed

The BIG MEETING of county chairs to discuss the HPR will now no longer take place on September 20. That confirmation arrived care of Middlesex CCC in a letter to members. An extract below:

The planned meeting of all FCC Chairs on September 20th has also been deferred, and the ECB will work with all counties to rearrange a suitable date, when Chairs will have the opportunity to discuss the proposals in the review in relation to future domestic structures. Furthermore, the ECB has also confirmed that no final decision on the domestic structure for 2024 and beyond will be taken at this meeting, which will provide all Counties with sufficient time to consult on the proposals.”

I don’t want to overdo the excitement content on this blog, but I’ve just fetched my slippers from their over-summering in the back of the wardrobe.

At Northants, Surrey have taken the new ball, and made the break through. The steadfast Vasconcelos lbw to Dan Worrall for 79. Skittles time?

Middlesex beat Glamorgan by 10 wickets at Lord’s

A drubbing, and after Glamorgan had looked so good just before tea yesterday as well. Five wickets to chief destroyer Toby Roland Jones, before Stoneman and Robson rattled off the runs in five and a bit overs.

Durham beat Leicestershire by seven wickets

Easy-peasy for Durham, losing just Jones for exactly fifty this morning. Take a bow Matthew Potts. Leicestershire – just two more games before you can retreat to lick your wounds. And rise again (maybe).

Grace Road: Durham 296 and 108-3 BEAT Leicestershire 202 and 108-3 by seven wickets.

Somerset declare, 340 for seven, a lead of 363

Whither Warwickshire? 364 runs to win; 82 overs to survive. Safety for Somerset if they win.

Fresh-faced/wet behind the ears/short-trousered etc etc Sussex lose nightwatchman Brad Currie. Ali Orr, in the running for the CWC young player of the year, has played an andante 44, Alsop four not out at the other end. A day’s vigil seems unlikely.

Durham need just three runs to beat winless Leicestershire. In sympathy to those at Grace Road, here is a happier memory (thanks Romeo).

A hundred for George Bartlett

A huge hug for George, a first ton of the summer, and a crucial one too. He celebrates by smashing a six shortly afterwards.

Bartlett wraps a jumper round his face in a pre-season photo call.
Jump(er) starting the relegation fight: George Bartlett scores his first century of the season for Somerset. Photograph: Ben Birchall/PA

The final curtain about to draw over Lord’s. A fourth for TRJ, nine down, with the Glamorgan lead just 15.

If Vasconcelos and Zaib could stretch the lead to 250…. but no, actually I think Surrey will get the runs, however many, unless Northants can bat all day. Northants currently 226 for five, 145 ahead.

Somerset lose an early wicket: no fifty for Lewis Goldsworthy, but a hundred in sight for George Bartlett.

Scores on the doors

The County Ground: Northants 339 and 209-5 v Surrey 421

Edgbaston: Warwickshire 196 v Somerset 219 and 277-4

Headingley: Essex 225 and 162-9 BEAT Yorkshire 134 and 252 by one wicket.

DIVISION TWO

Grace Road: Leicestershire 202 and 198 v Durham 296 and 51-2

Lord’s: Middlesex 390 v Glamorgan 214 and 191-8

Hove: Sussex 220 and 39-1 v Worcestershire 438-5dec

Wednesday’s round-up

Matthew Potts followed up six wickets in Leicestershire’s first innings with seven for 49 in their second, to assemble a career-best, all-dancing, 13 for 101 and put Durham within sight of victory. Potts, with the air of a man who pulls ploughs for fun, muscled through three spells, decimating winless Leicestershire’s scorecard.

With the scores level at Headingley, and Essex nine wickets down, Shane Snater smeared the winning runs with a leg-side boundary to snatch a one-wicket victory in a thriller against Yorkshire. Snater’s 65 not out in 51 balls propped up Essex after they’d made a hash of chasing 162, slipping from 51 for two to 64 for six.

Steve Patterson, released by Yorkshire at the end of the season, grabbed five for 46. Ben Coad and Finlay Bean had earlier made debut first-class fifties to give the hosts a sniff of a chance.

Somerset, who started the day by issuing a press release criticising the ECB’s current cricket schedule as “unacceptable,” crawled to an advantage on a slowing pitch in the crucial relegation face-off at Edgbaston. As Toms Lammonby and Abell, then George Bartlett (91 not out) and Lewis Goldsworthy, admirably saw off Warwickshire’s bowlers, members chewed over a 300 lead and the club’s statement.

“The current domestic playing programme, which resulted in only four one-day matches being played in Taunton over 43 days in the height of summer this year, with 17 Somerset players unavailable, is unacceptable to the club, its members and the South West’s cricketing public,” it said.

Tom Curran hit his maiden first-class century as title-chasing Surrey grabbed their match against Northamptonshire by the collar. Because of injury, the IPL and Covid, Curran hadn’t played a first-class game since April 2019, but slotted right back in, punting with panache, three sixes flipping the rope in his 93-ball 115.

Surrey’s 82-run first-innings lead looked crucial when Northants lost early second-innings wickets, but half centuries from Luke Procter, and then Ricardo Vasconcelos gave Northants a 100-plus lead by stumps and set up a tantalising final day.

All was smooth sailing at Lord’s for Glamorgan until 10 minutes before tea. From there, they lost eight for 52, after squandering an opening stand of 123 between David Lloyd and Edward Byrom. Just 15 runs in front, defeat looms against their promotion rivals Middlesex in the morning. Toby Roland-Jones took three for 48; Tim Murtagh and Ethan Bamber two wickets a piece.

A double hundred for Jake Libby, his first, put Worcestershire in the driving seat at damp Hove, cracking quick runs once the weather relented. Worcestershire declared with a lead of 218, giving Sussex time to lose their captain Tom Haines before the close.

Preamble

Good morning! It’s the final day of this round , with Surrey likely to rise back to the top of the table, unless Northants can do something extraordinary. Elsewhere, Matthew Potts’s 13 wickets should ensure Durham tidy things up early this morning; Glamorgan are in deep trouble, and Sussex’s mettle is about to be tested at Hove. Somerset have set themselves up to save the game on a stodgy Edgbaston pitch, while Essex pipped Yorkshire in the CC game of the summer (discuss) yesterday.

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