County cricket - as it happened

The best of the action from the latest round of the 2011 County Championship. Updates though the day and click here for scores


Round 6 of the 2011 County Championship: Day two/one

Today's fixtures:

Division One
Durham v Somerset 383-4
Sussex 304 v Nottinghamshire 5-1
Warwickshire v Worcestershire
Yorkshire v Hampshire

Division Two
Derbyshire 64-2 v Essex 179
Glamorgan v Kent 242
Gloucestershire v Northamptonshire

Cambridge MCCU v Surrey

Your top team of writers today is: David Hopps at the Riverside, Andy Wilson at Headingley and Mike Selvey at Fenner's, while Andy Bull will be at Lord's (yes, we know there's no cricket there today, but he's there for other reasons).

Your essential guide to the season

A preview of all the counties can be found here. You can find full fixture lists for the season here. And you can follow the action throughout the season here. There's also county cricket commentaries on BBC local radio here. County tables can be found here: Division One and Division Two.

Why not stick all these in your toolbar favourites?

You can also follow our cricket team here and on Twitter: David Hopps, Andy Wilson, Andy Bull, Steve Busfield and Barney Ronay

Day One match reports:

Andy Bull writes: "Stuart Broad fails to sparkle for Nottinghamshire against Sussex."

David Hopps writes: "Marcus Trescothick purrs for Somerset as he destroys Durham attack."

Rob Bagchi writes: "Derbyshire's Tony Palladino returns to haunt Essex."

Also: "ECB disciplines Lancashire's Sajid Mahmood and Somerset's Arul Suppiah."

Mike Selvey writes:

Fenners today, and goodness knows the last time I was there. I know I did my first ever report for the Guardian from there (Cambridge U v Essex, 1985), it was freezing, and Bumble was umpiring in a bobble hat. Played there as well as student and county player, the latter course never always running smoothly as a double hundred against us by Steve Henderson, who played for Glamorgan, and a hundred by Pringle will testify. In 1971 I played a festival game there- Cambridge Past and Present against their Oxford equivalent. Lord Ted played, and so did Peter May. The latter was a reluctant batsman ("they don't want to see me"), but persuaded. He played one stroke, off his legs, to the square leg boundary, and it was sufficient to encapsulate what a brilliant player he was. You can just tell.

Today, it will be to watch KP on his return to the field, another shy and retiring player prone to shunning the limelight. Its got to be done I suppose although it doesn't really matter if he spanks the undergrads all round Fenners or makes a scrappy dozen and gets a leading edge to cover. He will have more testing cricket to play before selection for the first Test.

Yesterday evening saw the premier of From The Ashes, the story of which may be familiar to you? Some good narrative and Kim Hughes in particular was refreshingly honest about the way he felt carved up by the old stagers. Anyone who has not done so should read Golden Boy, Chris Ryan's wonderful book about him. Vic and I have bit parts as talking heads, so it was a bit of a shock to arrive and be greeted by the photographers pen, with flash bulbs- " one more, over here Mike, to the left please, to the right, etc". Quite disturbing especially when you realise they hadn't really got a clue who I was. But a bit of fun.

Tomorrow, at a secret venue Somewhere-In-Shakespeare-Country, the England management are meeting Hugh Morris, the MD of England Cricket, for a tour debrief. A number of the issues that might have been expected - captaincy, fast bowler workload, length of tours- have been addressed already, and conversation will centre mostly on the preparation for the Ashes and the World Cup, what went right, what went wrong, how can things be adapted for future tours.

Has anyone tried the Goan Fish Curry yet? Just asking. No recipe as such today, but a CountyBlogLive! Handy Hint. Do you suffer from White Sauce Misery? Well get rid of those Bechamel Blues with an easy method.

Conventional method for a white sauce involves melting butter, adding flour to form a roux, cooking it, and then adding milk gradually. Get it wrong and it becomes lumpy
To the rescue comes St Delia of Smith and it is dead simple because essentially, you just bung it all in together, and heat it up. It really works.

So for Basic White Sauce All-in- One Method ( adaptable for all sorts, from mustard sauce to cheese sauce)
40 g butter
25 g plain flour
425 ml cold milk or half milk, half stock
salt and pepper

Put all ingredients in a saucepan ( it is essential that the liquid is cold), put over medium heat, whisk until the sauce starts to bubble and thicken. Stir with a wooden spoon to get into the corners of the pan, then whisk again. Turn down to lowest heat, and cook gently for 6 minutes.
A doddle

CountyBlogLive Cricket Trivia for 11th May
1955 Death, at Fordington, Dorset, of Gilbert Jessop, the Croucher. Think he might have got an IPL contract?

Andy Wilson at Headingley writes:
Would it be provocative to describe this as a relegation 48-pointer? Probably, at this stage of the season, but there's no doubt that both Yorkshire and Hampshire could do with a win. They are both in the bottom four having lost two of their first four fixtures, and a devil's advocate could argue that Yorkshire's position in sixth is slightly flattering as their only victory has come against rock-bottom Worcestershire.

Having said that they bounced back from consecutive losses by making the running in a draw at Trent Bridge last week, and receive a further boost today from the availability of Tim Bresnan. The Ashes hero eased back into action with a couple of wickets in a CB40 win at Canterbury on Sunday, and comes in as a straight replacement for Richard Pyrah, who will be out for at least three weeks with a dislocated knee.

Bresnan has been out on the square bowling with Ryan Sidebottom, but they'll both put their feet up this morning as Andrew Gale has won the toss and chosen to bat. That means a first bowl of the season for Kabir Ali, who makes a welcome return to the Hampshire team after his knee problems. James Tomlinson was also available after injury, but he misses out, with David Griffiths and Dominic Cork joining Kabir in a decent-sounding seam attack.

Yorkshire 26-2 v Hampshire
Andy Wilson at Headingley writes:
Hampshire are off to a flier in this battle of the Championship strugglers! Yorkshire lost both openers in the first three overs - Joe Sayers lbw to one from David Griffiths that must have nipped back into the left-hander, who was well forward, and Adam Lyth bowled by a beauty from captain crackpot Cork. Andrew Gale's already survived another big lbw shout from Griffiths, and inside-edged one alarmingly close to his stumps. But the clouds are high, the pitch looks fine, and it certainly doesn't feel like a six for two type of Headingley morning.


Lunchtime scoreboard

Division One
Somerset 515-5 v Durham
Compton 214*

Sussex 304 v Nottinghamshire 66-4

Warwickshire 59-2 v Worcestershire

Yorkshire 96-4 v Hampshire

Division Two
Essex 179 v Derbyshire 79-4
Masters 4-27

Kent 242 v Glamorgan 123-3

Northamptonshire 97-2 v Gloucestershire

Somerset 515-5 v Durham
David Hopps writes:

Nick Compton has his first championship double century and also a temporary memento of the occasion – an imprint on the side of his head after he was struck by a bouncer by Graham Onions.

Onions' bouncer is dangerous: straight, slippery and difficult to avoid. Compton, after adding 10 to his overnight 149, seemed to misjudge the length and ducked into it, all thoughts of a shot abandoned. The noise of ball against helmet and temple clanged around the ground. He continued after treatment and could count himself fortunate.

There are not too many jobs left these days where there is time to chat away the hours but staffing a county bookstall is one of them. "Did you see that rear up?" asked the women guarding a table of yellowing cricket magazines and Colin Forbes novels. "Nasty."

Compton's previous CB was also made against Durham, 190 for Middlesex at Lord's five years ago. He has not really kicked on since, but he has looked immensely stylish here, except for the moment when he crumpled to the floor, the latest piece of evidence that Onions is progressing as well as could be expected after back surgery.

Ben Stokes assisted in his recuperation. He pulled handsomely to prove that there were no ill effects and then a square cut to pass his old CB was as dapper as anything he had produced. Scott Borthwick's thigh-high full toss was an easy way to reach his 200, the ball sailing for six over square leg.

Durham's championship captain, Phil Mustard, was reportedly adamant at the end of the first day that he was correct to insert Somerset on the first morning. Then it was 383-4; now, at lunch on the second day, it is 515-5. There is more life on the river side of the square, he asserted, where this pitch is, and his bowlers had not performed well. But it was a dubious decision when Durham had three seamers, one of whom, Onions, is preferably limited to 15 overs a day as his rehab continues, and another of whom, Ruel Brathwaite, is inexperienced and proved wanting, and two spinners, one of them, Scott Borthwick, being cautiously handled.

Mustard has revealed that an inflamed big toe that has troubled him for several weeks has been diagnosed as gout. He has been duly advised to cut down on the beer and the burgers. How can a man be expected to make a decision at the toss when he is existing on water and lettuce leaves.

On that other cricketing tournament going on at the moment, Barney Ronay writes: "Indolent or brilliant? Chris Gayle arrives to light up the IPL - Chris Gayle's late arrival with Bangalore has caused a whirlwind as he sets about showing West Indies what they are missing."

Yorkshire 110-5 v Hampshire
Andy Wilson at Headingley writes:
As a Stoke City supporter, Dominic Cork would love a three-day finish in Hampshire's Championship game at Headingley to allow him to watch Saturday's FA Cup final. So far, things could not have gone better, and the old warhorse is leading from the front. He dismissed Adam Lyth with a beauty early on as Yorkshire slumped to 6 for two, and now he's struck again immediately after lunch by trapping Gerard Brophy lbw as he played around his front pad.

That left Yorkshire on 99 for five, not at all what Andrew Gale expected when he won the toss and chose to bat in decent conditions.

Hampshire have had a bit of luck, with both Gale and Joe Root falling in unusual fashion - although in each case, the victim of excellent fielding. Nic Pothas took a tumbling leg-side catch to dismiss Gale off Sean Ervine's innocuous first ball after he took over from Cork at the Kirkstall Lane End. Then Root, who had played very tidily and sensibly for 35, was left stranded when Ervine deflected a fierce straight drive from Jonny Bairstow on to the stumps behind him.

Bairstow is still there on 27, and Adil Rashid has just driven a beautiful cover boundary, and messrs Bresnan and Shahzad are still to come. But Yorkshire are already facing an uphill struggle.

Perhaps the showman Cork has been inspired by the presence of a television crew this morning on the Western Terrace. It's emerged that arrangements have been made for a scene from a new series by the makers of Ashes to Ashes and Life on Mars to be shot at the ground. It's called Eternal Law - nothing to do with Stuart, as far as we know - and five Hampshire shirts were requested by the producers. That's an unusual rider.

As I write David Griffiths, the young seamer from the Isle of Wight who has been the pick of Hampshire's attack, has just bowled a couple of crackers at Rashid. It will be interesting to see how Bresnan, Shahzad and Ryan Sidebottom bowl later.

Andy Wilson writes:
A couple of other developments that have nothing to do with events at Headingley. Sri Lanka seems to be shaping as the most likely neutral venue for England's Tests against Pakistan later this year. And a South African cheerleader claims to have been bundled home by organisers of the Indian Premier League after blogging that various high-profile cricketers treated the girls like pieces of meat. Less racily, we're still waiting for confirmation of the England Lions team to face Sri Lanka in Derby next week.

Weather update
Bad light has stopped play at Hove with the game intriguingly poised: Notts having recovered from 14-3 to 84-4. Naved took the first three wickets. Akhil Patel made 24 before departing. Samit Patel is still there on 40 with Adam Voges. But, the covers are currently on and Charlie Colville, Chris Adams and Nick Knight are now filling time on Sky Sports 1.


England Lions to face Sri Lanka at Derby

James Hildreth (Somerset) (Capt)
Jimmy Adams (Hampshire)
Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire)
Danny Briggs (Hampshire)
Ravi Bopara (Essex)
Jade Dernbach (Surrey)
Steven Finn (Middlesex)
Eoin Morgan (Middlesex)
Graham Onions (Durham)
Samit Patel (Nottinghamshire)
Ajmal Shahzad (Yorkshire)
James Taylor (Leicestershire)

Forgiveness for Patel? Head-to-head battle Morgan v Bopara? Recognition for Jonny Bairstow

England Lions news

Andy Wilson writes:
Samit Patel is the most eyecatching inclusion in the England Lions team to face Sri Lanka at Derby next week. That would suggest the selectors, and the England team director Andy Flower, have been impressed by his response to their criticism of his physical condition during the winter. Patel is joined in the squad by a second left arm spinner, Hampshire's Danny Briggs, which means no place for either of the leg-spin candidates - Yorkshire's Adil Rashid, and Durham's Scott Borthwick.

Graham Onions is also recalled in these early stages of his comeback from serious injury, with Steven Finn and Ajmal Shahzad the other seamers - raising the question of which of that trio, if any, might have missed out had Chris Woakes been fit.

Jonny Bairstow gets the nod as wicket keeper with Craig Kieswetter, who had been thought favourite for the position, also injured, and the selectors have set up a potential shoot-out for Paul Collingwood's Test position having picked both Eoin Morgan and Ravi Bopara.

2.48pm: Hove update:
The players are back on at a murky looking Hove. Notts are 99-4.

David Hopps writes:
As Andy has reported, England have finally forgiven Samit Patel. First signs that Patel still had an England future came when he was named in a provisional squad of 30 for the World Cup, but any optimism vanished when he was left out of the final squad and England's coach, Andy Flower, made his disappointment with his progress clear. "It's very frustrating but only the individual is responsible," Flower said at the time. "All we're saying is, 'Get into reasonable shape'. We want to see is a significant improvement. We want tough, determined cricketers for England and he is not indicating that he is capable of that."

A few months later, Patel is now back in favour. So what has changed? The background to this comes in the time that Patel spent in Australia last winter seeking to improve his physical fitness. He returned from the course, part sponsored by the ECB, having lost some weight but still failing badly on fitness tests. It was then that Flower expressed his disappointment so pointedly. To Patel's credit, he returned to Australia for a second time, this time financing it himself, and this time achieved the minimum fitness levels that England were demanding.

He has had a decent start to the season for Notts and was in perky mood when I chatted to him at Trent Bridge last week, hopeful that his improvements would be officially recognized. England regard his weight and fitness stats as nothing spectacular – just above the minimum standard, a standard that he now has to maintain – but he has made progress and the signs that he is finally taking England's demands seriously have been enough for recognition in the Lions squad.

Patel, playing for Notts against Sussex at Hove, has become the story of the day. He is 53 not out as Nottinghamshire, 111-4, struggle in response to Sussex's 304.

For those not up with events at Fenner's, Kevin Pietersen was out for 30. Lord Selvey will be filing on KP's comeback as soon as he has access to wi-fi.

Somerset 610-6 dec v Durham 18-0
David Hopps at the Riverside writes:
Phil Mustard must feel an attack of gout coming on. The upshot of his decision to put Somerset into bat has been a declaration at 610-6, the highest score ever made by an opposing county at The Riverside, beaten only by Durham's own 648-5 against Notts two years ago. There is an individual record for an opposing batsman at The Riverside too, Nick Compton finishing with 254, made in more than nine hours at the crease.

Durham's tactics after lunch were strange in the extreme, a regular diet of short balls with two men back for the pull; as diets go here was another one that risked inducing pain in Mustard's big toe.

On a slow, unresponsive pitch, it was a strange way to go, even though Compton had been struck in the face by Onions before lunch. At least it proved that Onions can bowl the effort ball repeatedly, presumably without any discomfort from his back. He was watched by England selector James Whitaker on the first day as the Lions squad was being selected and his return against Sri Lanka at Derby next week does not look premature on this evidence.

Durham's solitary wicket robbed Somerset of their third century-maker, Peter Trego, who was on 98 when he fell lbw to one that scuttled through from the leg-spinner Scott Borthwick. If that had been Shane Warne, cries of "flipper," would have rose from the media box, but as it is Borthwick nobody is quite sure whether he bowls one, so it will probably be classed as a straight one. Anyway, it hurried through low and Trego was stone dead.

Sussex 304 v Notts 139-6
Samit Patel has just spoiled a good story: recalled to the England set-up today he was also on course for a match-saving/winning century at Hove, but has just been stumped by Prior off the bowling of Panesar for 63.

Sussex 304 v Notts 140-9
England's forgotten spinner, Monty Panesar, is making a bid to become the story of the day. Having opened the bowling for Sussex, he is now running through last year's county champion's middle order and has figures of 9.2-2-11-3. His victims include spin rival Samit Patel.
Notts still need 15 to avoid the follow on.


Teatime scoreboard

Division One
Somerset 610-6 dec v Durham 37-0
Di Venuto 29*

Sussex 304 v Nottinghamshire 145
Anyone 4-52 Panesar 3-11

Warwickshire 132-5 v Worcestershire
Wright 3-40

Yorkshire 210-7 v Hampshire
Bairstow 83

Division Two
Essex 179 v Derbyshire 200-7
Masters 4-51

Kent 242 v Glamorgan 256-5

Northamptonshire 228-5 v Gloucestershire

Yorkshire 210-7 v Hants
Andy Wilson at Headingley writes:
After ending his long wait for a first-class century with a double at Trent Bridge last week, Jonny Bairstow has reverted to type. But Dominic Cork deserves a chunk of the credit for that, dragging sufficient life from the pitch to have Bairstow dragging on to his stumps for 83. That was Cork's third wicket, and the afternoon session has also featured a first for Kabir Ali, who had Adil Rashid driving loosely to second slip. Kabir also had Bairstow caught at backward point off a leading edge, surprised by a little extra bounce as he worked to leg - only for umpire Neil Mallender to signal no-ball. However with Yorkshire on 210 for seven after choosing to bat first, the honours are still with Hampshire. Tim Bresnan has moved to 25 as unobtrusively as anyone of his size can.

Sussex 304 v Notts 145 & 2-0
Against much modern conventional thinking, Sussex have enforced the follow-on at Hove.

Sussex 304 v Notts 145 & 7-0
Notts's second innings has had a tricky start with Neil Edwards retired hurt.

Andy Bull at Lord's writes:
The ICC's Cricket Committee have spoken. The question now is whether anyone on the Board is going to listen. Here is what they had to say: they will recommend that there is a qualifying tournament for the 2015 World Cup, which will give Ireland a little hope yet.

In other news, they want the UDRS to be used in all international cricket, but with the number of unsuccessful reviews cut down to one per innings in limited overs games. Interestingly, they will also recommend that two balls are used in every ODI match, one from each end. This may not be as simple as it sounds - could a team, for instance, chose to rough one ball up for the spinners and keep the other shiny for the quicks?

They also suggest that at least one Powerplay should always be used between the 16th and 40th overs.

Finally, they expect the first floodlit Test to be held in 2013. Expect to see the pink ball being trailled in first-class cricket around the world this summer.

That's all folks.

Northants 295-5 v Gloucs
It's another one of those days for Northamptonshire's Andrew Hall. He is 90 not out and Northants have recovered from 125-5 to 295-5. Niall O'Brien is with him, unbeaten on 73. Hall already has 456 championship runs this summer at a current average of 114.


David Hopps, Mike Selvey, Andy Wilson, Steve Busfield and Andy Bull

The GuardianTramp

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