May 24, 2012

LV= County Championship, Thursday May 24

7.30pm: Andrew McGlashan wraps up the day
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7.30pm: Andrew McGlashan wraps up the day

That's it for another day. It didn't look as though we would have any results today, but George Dockrell's wonderful spell at Taunton changed all that and set up Somerset for a very significant victory. Meanwhile, Lancashire are on top against Middlesex and there's a very tight game emerging at The Oval. In Division Two, Leicestershire are in a heap of trouble against Kent while Derbyshire have taken charge against Essex.

For all the reports, scorecards and news head over to our County Cricket page and we'll see you again tomorrow.

6pm: Jon Culley at Surrey v Warwickshire

A fascinating day of ebbs and flows took another twist when Surrey lost Jason Roy and Rory Hamilton-Brown in the space of four deliveries. Roy had hit 71 off 85 balls when he chipped Rikki Clarke to the straighter of two short mid-wickets. Then Hamilton-Brown, who would almost certainly have gone after the Warwickshire bowling with as much urgency as Roy, tried to cut Jeetan Patel and was caught behind by Tim Ambrosem holding the seventh catch of a match to which he has also contributed a run-out.

It put the brakes on Surrey's progress rather sharply but they have dug in commendably since, Tom Maynard and Jacques Rudolph, playing his last innings for Surrey, adding 36 in just short of 13 overs. At 144-4, Surrey lead by 120.

5.40pm: Alex Winter at Essex v Derbyshire

Spiral staircases, when did they go out of fashion? There’s one at the exit of this stand, atop which lies the press box, and below and behind it was a boy, if he was 15 we’re lucky, rolling up and attempting to light a cigarette. A large chap came up to him and gave him a stern warning about such activity, “you only live once” came the reply. Heaven help him.

And at the moment Essex are looking for divine inspiration, reeling at 3 for 2 after Tom Poynton’s first-class best, 50 not out from 35 balls, helped push Derbyshire’s lead to 141 after a while looking like it would be less than a hundred. A momentum-swinging innings.

5.20pm: Myles Hodgson at Lancashire v Middlesex

There may have been some reservations at the signing of Ajmal Shahzad, the former Yorkshire all-rounder, on loan until the end of the season but his performances are fast endearing him to even the most suspicious of Lancastrians.

Two wickets in five balls on his debut against Sussex, Shahzad has followed that with two wickets during an impressive six over burst after tea from the River End, including that of England batsman Eoin Morgan.

His eye-catching spell began with Joe Denly reaching for a ball outside off-stump and picking out point and, in his next over, he swung the ball into Morgan who got an inside edge into his stumps, prompting Shahzad to celebrate excitedly.

Shahzad’s impact was followed up by Simon Kerrigan, Lancashire’s left-arm spinner, having David Malan caught at short leg to leave Middlesex struggling to remain in the match on 101 for five.

Sadly, we will not be hearing Shahzad’s views on his day in the sun because interview requests have been blocked by Lancashire at the request of his management company, International Sports Management. They have allowed him limited media access ever since Colin Graves, Yorkshire’s chief executive, criticised Shahzad’s attitude following his release from his native county.

5.25pm: Ivo Tennant at Hampshire v Glamorgan

David Hughes, the ECB's pitch inspector, has given this strip the all clear. He was concerned yesterday about some indentations but not about the lush grass. Interestingly, he sees this as a new approach by groundsmen on the basis that such grassy pitches provide more pace and carry, much needed after the wet spring. "He's a fine groundsman, Nigel Gray," said Hughes.

3.50pm: Jon Culley at Surrey v Warwickshire

The Warwickshire innings was a bit of a mess in the end. At lunch they were 182-4, trailing by 41 runs, which was still a handy position on what is essentially a good batting surface, even though it was not as handy as they hoped it would be from 106-1 overnight.

Between lunch and an early tea, however, they lost all their remaining wickets and didn't pick up even a second batting point.

After five wickets fell for 23 runs between the 68th over and the 85th, the last wicket at least took them in front. Surrey delayed taking the new ball until the 90th over, with the scores level, at which point, slightly ironically, Chris Woakes and Chris Wright suddenly started to score runs, with the ball coming on to the bat a little quicker. The last 20 balls of the innings, in fact, yielded another 24.

But a bat-pad catch by Jason Roy to remove Wright brought it to an end. Gareth Batty finished with 6-73, his best figures for Surrey, without doing anything extravagant with his off-spin.

Surrey are off to their usual pedestrian start. After five overs of their second innings, they are 27 without loss.

3.40pm: Alex Winter at Essex v Derbyshire

Another sweaty afternoon here but far from the toil for the bowlers I was expecting. They have managed to chip away and take Derbyshire away from a position of dominance into one of mere strength. There’s a danger the visitors could slip away with a lead of less than a hundred, which would be disastrous because it’s so good to bat today. And Wes Durston knows it – he’s the one man to go on and make a big score.

A few enjoying the grassy picnic area behind the river stand; a shame there’s no view of the cricket from there – this ground is perhaps a little too compact – plenty more ignoring the cricket and lounging around on the riverside in central park (nothing, absolutely nothing like New York). Ice cream, cider, ice blocks on the knees (yes one chap, his picnic swallowed up, was doing that) – anything to keep cool here.

3.15pm: Ivo Tennant at Hampshire v Glamorgan

Marcus North is outscoring his fellow Aussie left hander, Simon Katich, in this match, but this has been over-shadowed by news of greater gravitas which has filtered through from down under to West End: Shane Warne, who is returning to have a stand named in his honour, has lost weight since his playing days here and at the old ground at Northlands Road. We shall see for ourselves when he appears on June 16. One thing is for sure: the pre-match lunch being put on to honour him and the late Colin Ingleby-Mackenzie won't result in anyone piling on the pounds, given that the main course is cottage pie. As the centrepiece of a meal costing £99 a head including wines, most punters will be after double portions.

2.55pm: Myles Hodgson at Lancashire v Middlesex

Temperatures have increased sufficiently for the press tent to put in an order for ice-cream. There is no word back yet whether the refreshment van is prepared to extend the special discount applied to bacon butties earlier in the day to include other forms of refreshment.

There may also be plenty of heated discussions inside the Lancashire dressing room after they lost six wickets for 71 runs in only 28.3 overs from the moment they lost centurion Ashwell Prince during the morning session. The collapse, thanks largely to off-spinner Ollie Rayner’s three for 88, ensured Lancashire were dismissed for 392 and have still only reached 400 once in seven championship matches this summer.

2.40pm: Jon Culley at Surrey v Warwickshire

Bumped into David Fulton at lunch. The former Kent opener turned Sky Sports reporter abseiled from the roof of the OCS stand last Saturday -- for charity, you understand, not just out of boredom. As a scary experience, he said, it did not come close to going forth among 3,000 schoolchildren in search of relatively coherent interviews.

Warwickshire somehow struggling to get their noses in front. 106-2 overnight, they are now 213-9. Five have gone since lunch. Darren Maddy and Rikki Clarke leg before to Stuart Meaker and Gareth Batty respectively, in between which Rory Hamilton-Brown, a reluctant purveyor of off-spin, took his first Championship wicket since last May.

Since then Batty has taken two in two balls, having Keith Barker stumped and taking a return catch to remove Jeetan Patel before Chris Wright repelled the hat-trick ball. Batty has 5-70, largely through his own skill rather than anything in the pitch.

1.45pm: Ivo Tennant at Hampshire v Glamorgan

News of Nic Pothas, Shane Warne's favourite wicketkeeper (or, to tell the truth, one of): having left Hampshire at the end of last season, against his wishes, he has become adept at hockey, playing in central defence for a team in Winchester. He wants to go into cricket coaching and also has a property business which he is intent on expanding. As a nomadic individual who will be 40 next year, a South African with a Greek passport, he need not be confined to the south coast.

1pm: Alex Winter at Essex v Derbyshire

Good day; delightfully leisurely here at what once again is a gorgeous day at Chelmsford. The sun has broken through earlier than yesterday and it’s bloomin hot. Speaking of which; my hotel last night.

The most violent, powerful music was being pumped out of the front of the Saracens Head Hotel; I approached with a dreadful feeling. But I walked past the punishing sound and through a courtyard, up some stairs to a light, tiled atrium that served as the hotel reception. The rooms were up even more stairs and my smile widened. By the time I opened room 12 there was no noise at all. Just heat. The room looked out over the atrium, the glass roof of which created a greenhouse effect that was conducted into my room. On went the blow fan. On went the shower on cold. 20 minutes later I was luke warm rather than hot. A cold lager later, at a pub far removed from the one below my accommodation, and I was getting back to somewhere closer to 37.5 degrees.

Thankfully I overcame the warmth to enjoy a reasonable night’s sleep. This morning my al fresco breakfast was followed by a walk round Chelmsford Cathedral – not the oldest nor the grandest of Cathedral’s I’ve visited but beautiful nonetheless. Also one of the few Cathedrals’s to double as the parish church.

Over the dual carriageway, it’s been an excellent morning for Derbyshire who lost Martin Guptill to a poor stroke – I was looking forward to more of him. The visitors may only need to bat once in this match. After the first half hour it’s been plain sailing. No success for David Masters today but last night his wicket of Paul Borrington was his 500th in first-class cricket; George Dobell spoke to him before the start of the season.

12.40pm: Jon Culley at Surrey v Warwickshire

Surrey's bowlers are doing their best to fight back on behalf of their under-performing batsmen at The Oval, where Warwickshire are looking somewhat less likely to build a substantial lead than it had earlier appeared.

Comfortably placed at 106-1 overnight after Surrey's disappointing, some would say wasteful 223 all out, the First Division leaders suffered three setbacks in the space of eight overs and are proceeding rather cautiously now, at 175-4.

Will Porterfield gave his wicket away somewhat, failing to get to the pitch of the ball as he went to drive Gareth Batty, who has found some help for his off-spin. The ball flew off a thick edge to Tom Maynard at slip. Skipper Jim Troughton's bad run continued when he was yorked by Stuart Meaker, before Batty claimed his second wicket -- the big one of the morning -- by setting up Varun Chopra with a nice piece of bowling.

He allowed the opener to claim his 10th boundary by offering him some width outside off stump before catching him by surprise with a quicker, fuller delivery that bowled him only a couple of balls later.

Troughton has only 40 runs from eight innings in the Championship so far.

12.30pm: Ivo Tennant at Hampshire v Glamorgan

David Hughes, the ECB's pitch inspector for this match, is back at West End this morning. He is not satisfied with the state of the thickly grassed pitch that Nigel Gray has cut. As a former left arm spinner - of the flatter variety, like his Lancashire team-mate and off spinner Jack Simmons - Hughes will not have been pleased to see Danny Briggs, a fellow left armer, made 12th man on this ground once again. After all, he has an England future.

12pm: Myles Hodgson at Lancashire v Middlesex

This morning has been the tale of two catches for Middlesex as they desperately try to limit Lancashire to a manageable first innings total. The first chance was missed, wicketkeeper John Simpson snatching at an edge after Luke Procter had edged Tim Murtagh on 23.

Disappointed as they were for missing that regulation opportunity, I am sure those of a Middlesex persuasion would have taken that miss to finally remove Ashwell Prince, Lancashire’s South African overseas batsman.

Having resumed on 121 overnight, Prince helped Lancashire to a third batting point before driving forcefully at Gareth Berg from the River End and edging behind, where Ollie Rayner took a brilliant, reflex slip catch diving to his right. He had scored 144 after six hours at the crease, helped Procter add 90 for the fifth wicket and has put Lancashire on course to reach 400 for only the second time this season.

11.40am: Jon Culley at Surrey v Warwickshire

Hats off to Surrey for making a proper job of engaging with the schoolchildren of the area who might become their future supporters.

The odd little knot of eager youngsters is a regular feature of county cricket around the country but perhaps not on this scale. Surrey invited every school in south London and Surrey to come along to the second day of the match with Warwickshire and 100 have taken up the offer, as a result of which the club are expecting around 3,000 children to show up. Luckily for them it is a glorious day.

How many will turn up with a thermos flask and a couple of woollies in April when they grow up remains to be seen but working on the law of percentages there should at least be a few who get the bug.

It will be a noisy day if you are anywhere near the Family Stand but in such numbers the kids will feel part of an event, which is the whole point. It appears a good number of them are watching, too, judging by the increase in decibels when Surrey claimed the day's first wicket.

That was William Porterfield, who got a thick edge to slip when he went down the wicket to Gareth Batty, whose partnership with Varun Chopra had yielded 117 runs. Warwickshire are 136-2.

11.00am: Myles Hodgson at Lancashire v Middlesex

The sun is out, although there is a chilly wind, and we are almost ready to start the second day at Aigburth. There has been a busier procession than normal from the press tent towards the nearby refreshment van, who have given added incentives to some of their best customers by offering a discount to anyone with a press pass.

Lancashire will also be hoping to feast in conditions, which traditionally favour the bowlers early on before allowing batsmen to prosper. The champions have struggled to get past those early stages this summer and have yet to reach 300 in three matches at Aigburth, so far.

They should do so with ease this morning with Ashwell Prince, their South African overseas batsman, unbeaten on 121 after nearly five hours at the crease after scoring his first century in county cricket since 2009. Middlesex, for their part, will be hoping for a little more luck than yesterday morning, when Tim Murtagh finished wicket-less during his 10 over new ball spell but could easily have claimed three wickets with the number of times he beat the bat.

9.15am: Alex Winter with a croissant and white Americano

If I was on live television right now you could probably call it a poor rip off of James Richardson on Gazzetta Football Italia - remember that? Channel 4; hell of a theme tune; Richardson sat outside a delightful café mulling over the weekend’s papers? I’m also sat outside, mulling over the day’s papers but online – the same scene updated for 2012 perhaps? Also my view is nowhere near as romantic as the one enjoyed by Richardson. I digress.

The cricket news that broke late last night – and clogged up my twitter feed, there are downsides to following 20 blokes all doing the same job – was that Kevin Pietersen was fined an undisclosed amount for a tweet about Nick Knight. Would love to hear all your opinions on the topic – ECB too harsh? KP stupid? Knight boring? Get involved below and on twitter.

All yesterday’s County Championship action to mull over too. Nick Compton needing another 67 runs to emulate Graeme Hick with 1,000 runs before the end of May. Lancashire rediscovering the attitude that took them to last year’s title and Surrey, struggling at The Oval, in the words of Monty Gardner: Some of Surrey's batsmen are not old enough to remember Myspace, let alone the leave outside off stump.

I watched David Wainwright bowl superbly yesterday at Chelsmford, he took his third five-wicket haul of the season to put Derbyshire on top against Essex. Elsewhere, my young Gloucestershire attack sweltered at Wantage Road; a first hundred of the season for ex-Essex James Middlebrook there.

Also, Kent on top at Canterbury after Leicestershire’s batting failed and Sean Ervine scoring a hundred to put Hampshire in a decent position against Glamorgan, for whom John Glover took four wickets – a friend who I’ve played with and against, so my congratulations to him and long may such form continue.

Alex Winter is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

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  • Paul, Somerset on May 24, 2012, 18:02 GMT

    Oh. And, Derm: which nation do you suggest Dockrell represents if he wants to play Test cricket? Australia? The West Indies? Zimbabwe? Or the country which has been involved in his coaching since he was sixteen?

  • Paul, Somerset on May 24, 2012, 17:54 GMT

    Just back from Taunton. To answer some questions, the Zum declaration this morning was presumably to take advantage of the warmth and heavy cloud cover. Getting rid of di Venuto early justified it. He was by far Durham's best batsman in the first innings.

    In the afternoon the sun shone, batting conditions were superb and Durham mostly just got themselves out. They looked a tired, lacklustre side. I wonder whether some of them are simply too old and cynical and are already mentally resigned to Div. 2.

    By contrast, the Zum teenagers were like spring lambs. The Overton twins are enormous, and may well be injury-prone in the future, but for now are haring around, biffing runs and taking wickets and catches with an exuberance that makes me feel old just watching them. The catch which one of them plucked from about 12 feet in the air at mid-off to dismiss Plunkett was a joy. The contrast in attitude with Plunkett's lazy attempt to clear the young giant was striking.

  • Nick C on May 24, 2012, 15:58 GMT

    @Derm, I can't bother by that silly argument yet again...

    Samuel's right Suppiah or whoever's covering for Banger have generally failed meaning Compton has generally failed meaning Compton may as well opened in the past few games. No matter anyway somehow Compton's 'failed' as well so we'll go about getting these runs sharpish. Hildreth not in the mood hand about it looks like and Kieswetter/Buttler to come.

    Either way at least this game will be a result unless something mad happens.

  • Daniel on May 24, 2012, 15:48 GMT

    Re. comments earlier on the Test bowlers' pace - it seemed to me like the registered speeds for everyone were down, on both sides, and including Swann, which suggests that the Lord's speedgun was poorly calibrated.

  • Dave the Eagle on May 24, 2012, 15:39 GMT

    And the Bears are trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

    I say that but they still had a lot of work to do but the collapse put paid to an easy victory.

    Surrey are flying along and with two days to go now look in a very strong position. What a difference (almost) a day makes. Will there be more twists to this game?

  • Momo on May 24, 2012, 15:39 GMT

    Derm is confused, it hurt itself in it's confusion.

  • Alan Harrison on May 24, 2012, 15:26 GMT

    Well, Samuel, that way everyone gets what they want; Compton doesn't open, but he still gets his chance to come out to bat with 152 still needed!

  • Derm on May 24, 2012, 15:24 GMT

    Dockrell for England? Sure why don't you take Stirling while you're at it!? England will be fielding a team of overseas-born players at this rate!

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  • Paul, Somerset on May 24, 2012, 18:02 GMT

    Oh. And, Derm: which nation do you suggest Dockrell represents if he wants to play Test cricket? Australia? The West Indies? Zimbabwe? Or the country which has been involved in his coaching since he was sixteen?

  • Paul, Somerset on May 24, 2012, 17:54 GMT

    Just back from Taunton. To answer some questions, the Zum declaration this morning was presumably to take advantage of the warmth and heavy cloud cover. Getting rid of di Venuto early justified it. He was by far Durham's best batsman in the first innings.

    In the afternoon the sun shone, batting conditions were superb and Durham mostly just got themselves out. They looked a tired, lacklustre side. I wonder whether some of them are simply too old and cynical and are already mentally resigned to Div. 2.

    By contrast, the Zum teenagers were like spring lambs. The Overton twins are enormous, and may well be injury-prone in the future, but for now are haring around, biffing runs and taking wickets and catches with an exuberance that makes me feel old just watching them. The catch which one of them plucked from about 12 feet in the air at mid-off to dismiss Plunkett was a joy. The contrast in attitude with Plunkett's lazy attempt to clear the young giant was striking.

  • Nick C on May 24, 2012, 15:58 GMT

    @Derm, I can't bother by that silly argument yet again...

    Samuel's right Suppiah or whoever's covering for Banger have generally failed meaning Compton has generally failed meaning Compton may as well opened in the past few games. No matter anyway somehow Compton's 'failed' as well so we'll go about getting these runs sharpish. Hildreth not in the mood hand about it looks like and Kieswetter/Buttler to come.

    Either way at least this game will be a result unless something mad happens.

  • Daniel on May 24, 2012, 15:48 GMT

    Re. comments earlier on the Test bowlers' pace - it seemed to me like the registered speeds for everyone were down, on both sides, and including Swann, which suggests that the Lord's speedgun was poorly calibrated.

  • Dave the Eagle on May 24, 2012, 15:39 GMT

    And the Bears are trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

    I say that but they still had a lot of work to do but the collapse put paid to an easy victory.

    Surrey are flying along and with two days to go now look in a very strong position. What a difference (almost) a day makes. Will there be more twists to this game?

  • Momo on May 24, 2012, 15:39 GMT

    Derm is confused, it hurt itself in it's confusion.

  • Alan Harrison on May 24, 2012, 15:26 GMT

    Well, Samuel, that way everyone gets what they want; Compton doesn't open, but he still gets his chance to come out to bat with 152 still needed!

  • Derm on May 24, 2012, 15:24 GMT

    Dockrell for England? Sure why don't you take Stirling while you're at it!? England will be fielding a team of overseas-born players at this rate!

  • Samuel on May 24, 2012, 15:17 GMT

    .... and what was I saying? Barrow gone first ball, Compton in already!

  • Samuel on May 24, 2012, 15:16 GMT

    Alan - I think you're over-estimating the ability of our openers at the moment. Suppiah's decent but inconsistent, and since Trescothick has been injured Barrow or Gregory, whoever's been up there, hasn't set the world alight. Compton's been coming in as an auxiliary opener quite a bit pretty much, so it might not be such a bad move.

  • Alan Harrison on May 24, 2012, 15:10 GMT

    @Nick C: re. Somerset changing their order to give Compton a chance to get those runs. I think not. I wish Compton the best, but it seems to me you shouldn't mess about with your batting order for the sake of personal milestones when chasing 150 in the fourth innings of a match. You still need people to do the jobs they are best at.

  • Nick C on May 24, 2012, 15:00 GMT

    @Momo after taking 6-29 I'd have some choice words about him. It's his second (potential) match winning performance this season. Both game were at home as well so maybe there is something in the Somerset pitch for a pinner on the third/fourth day?

    Anyway 152 runs to get.

  • Samuel on May 24, 2012, 14:58 GMT

    6-fer for Dockrell! Another one likely to be being looked at by the England selectors soon I reckon. And Nick - I'd say yes, quite simply because Suppiah and Barrow isn't a stable opening partnership and are likely to give away an early wicket or two, getting Durham's tails up and back into the match. I know Compton's been scoring runs at 3, but he's also often been coming in early, so he'd be comfortable with it I reckon.

  • Momo on May 24, 2012, 14:56 GMT

    @Nick C: Dickrell? You must be a Durham fan. :D

  • Nick C on May 24, 2012, 14:40 GMT

    Congrats to Dickrell on his 5fer.

    Do Somerset allow Compton to open for maximum chance to make his 67 runs? They'll likely only be chasing 150ish.

  • Samuel on May 24, 2012, 14:13 GMT

    Nice to see Durham reverting to type in the second innings! Has the pitch deteriorated ridiculously quickly, or have they just batted badly?

  • Dave the Eagle on May 24, 2012, 13:29 GMT

    The Bears enjoyed Surrey's 1st innings so much they have decided to try and emulate them.

    A rather desultory looking 207/7 considering the day started with them on 106/1.

    Not massively impressed. Unusual for a normally solid batting lineup too. At least this way we can't bat the life out of the game. All results still possible.

  • Mathew on May 24, 2012, 12:41 GMT

    I've seen Tymal Mills bowl and yes he can bowl extremely quick in short bursts. He seems to be a bit of a momentum bowler as in when he is in stride and good rhythm everything works well for him and he bowls good areas at very high speeds. But just as often he bowls erratically and too short. So he has great potential but needs to find consistent performances I think he will soon be knocking the England door because of the fact he offers something different being left handed and up there with meaker and finn with speed.

  • Alan Gardner on May 24, 2012, 12:40 GMT

    @Kev Crossfield Criticisms ...? Qu'est-ce que tu dis?!

  • Alex Winter on May 24, 2012, 12:15 GMT

    Reece Topley simply can't get a game at the moment, been playing seconds apparently. Looks like six wickets in three games.

    Essex deal with Tymal Mills very strangely. Only four overs for him, 0 for 5 in 46 overs of this innings. Too few for a lad that can bowl up to 90mph? He was bowling too short and plenty of deliveries he could leave but there's something very good about this kid and he should be bowling more for me and told to pitch the thing up.

  • The Lizard on May 24, 2012, 12:01 GMT

    Bragg and North are battling well at the Ageas Bowl. I'm enjoying it - it's proper cricket, attritional, etc etc (I'm going to try and roll out some more cliches later).

    As an aside - there's no ice cream van. Which is hugely disappointing. I want a 99 and I want one now.

  • Dave the Eagle on May 24, 2012, 11:51 GMT

    Alex - I don't think KP' comments can be called mindless. It seems to be a reaction to the fact he doesn't either like or rate Knight.

    Comparing the two as players isn't really fair considering Knight's shortcomings as a Test player, but he did average over 40 for ODI (100 matches) which is comparable to KPs average over a similar number of matches and similar first class averages.

    Knight was far from a mug as a batsman and deserves some respect.

    On the other hand, KP is perfectly within his rights to criticise/respond to Knight's comments but should refrain from personal comments. The fine (whatever the sum) shouldn't have been levied. A bit OTT I feel.

  • Samuel on May 24, 2012, 11:48 GMT

    Matt - both Tymal Mills and Reece Topley (who hasn't seemed to get a game this season - anyone know if he's injured?) at Essex are left armers I think, and both promising, but they're the only ones I can think of.

  • Matt McMillin on May 24, 2012, 11:44 GMT

    A 4th XI attack consisting of Shahzad Woakes Coles/Shreck/Barker/Rankin also shows promise and form (in some intances) so far this year.

    Interesting to note with the number of international sides picking left armers recently (Starc, Parnell, Boult, Johnson, Bollinger, Wagner, Pathan, Riaz etc etc) that the only one in these English names mentioned is Barker, and he is pretty new on the scene. Are there other left arm quicks on the circuit doing anything of note?

  • Alex Winter on May 24, 2012, 11:35 GMT

    With regards the ECB deal with a broadcaster for Asia, the deal is yet to be confirmed. ESPN-Star Sports, a joint venture between ESPN and News Corporation, are in negotiations.

    RE: KP etc. Everyone's entitled to their opinions but for them to have credibility they have to be justified. Much of the mindless nonsense aimed at George etc has no reasoning behind it, was KP's tweet just the same?

  • Samuel on May 24, 2012, 11:33 GMT

    Jack - I don't think Tremlett will be back near the side too soon considering his injury, and I just feel that Bresnan was exposed slightly in the last Test; he was fairly unthreatening and well down on pace (although given how cold it was it was hardly conducive to bowling too quickly). Not that I think Bresnan is a bad bowler - far from it - but if he didn't bat like he does he would never get in the side over someone like Finn. And when he fails with the bat, like he has in the last two Tests, his bowling doesn't often make up for it. Finn and the likes of Meaker below that may soon be making too irresistible a case to resist.

  • Jack Sheldon on May 24, 2012, 11:25 GMT

    @Samuel When all are fit England can now field three pace attacks:

    1. Broad, Anderson, Bresnan/ Finn 2. Bresnan/ Finn, Tremlett, Onions 3. Brooks, Meaker, Dernbach

    All could do well at international level, and all are 'deserving' of a call-up. But you can only pick three of them, and I can't see that third batch jumping the queue imminently!

  • Dave the Eagle on May 24, 2012, 11:10 GMT

    As usual the walking wicket of Troughton means 2 down become 3 down pretty sharpish. Shame Chopra then followed him back to the hutch.

    Plenty more batting to come but Surrey fighting back here.

  • Samuel on May 24, 2012, 11:03 GMT

    Nick - it was interesting, but seeing as Jamie Overton can hit a ball, I wouldn't have minded him seeing if he couldn't have hit us up to a bit more of a substantial lead. Still, bold move, over to the bowlers.

    Anyone else think Meaker is getting seriously close to a Test call up? Not into the side maybe, but I think we can expect to see him in a couple of squads before the summer is through. He did well for the Lions and is taking plenty of wickets on flat ones at the Oval, and is quicker even than Finn. Something I noticed at Lord's is just how down on pace the attack was looking - Bresnan and Broad being the main culprits - so I wouldn't mind seeing a couple of real quicks in Finn and Meaker keeping them all on their toes!

  • Kev Crossfield on May 24, 2012, 11:02 GMT

    On the KP-Knight affair. I wonder if cricinfo bloggers feel the need of similar protection in view of some of the criticisms that have been made of George Dobell, David Hopps and Alan Gardner, etc, on this site. Should there exist a system of penalty fines for posters to cricinfo?

  • Nick C on May 24, 2012, 10:42 GMT

    Interesting move by Somerset and I like it. No point in Overton and Dockrell trying to make a larger first innings lead get Durham in and get them out. Chase whatever they set.

    To people with access to the stats what's lowest first innings lead to declare on where there hasn't been an agreement between the sides?

  • Jack Sheldon on May 24, 2012, 10:35 GMT

    @Ed I don't think there is a feud as such... not as far as I'm aware anyway.

  • Michael Trout on May 24, 2012, 10:33 GMT

    Something fishy about this KP outburst. Seems like a set-up to me. First time Nick 'he hasn't got all of that' Knight gets off the fence an England player is forced to cough up for having a go back. Would have been better to have made KP pick the splinters out of Knight's behind than fine him.

  • Michael Trout on May 24, 2012, 10:33 GMT

    Something fishy about this KP outburst. Seems like a set-up to me. First time Nick 'he hasn't got all of that' Knight gets off the fence an England player is forced to cough up for having a go back. Would have been better to have made KP pick the splinters out of Knight's behind than fine him.

  • Ed on May 24, 2012, 10:27 GMT

    With regards to KP getting fined, are we seriously suggesting that cricketers shouldn't be allowed to comment on commentators comments(not the three comments in a row!)? Nick Knight said KP's performances weren't deserving of an ODI place(the thing that started this feud), which was merely an opinion, and KP suggested that Knight's performances weren't up to scratch. I don't see SKY fining Nick Knight.

  • Nick C on May 24, 2012, 10:24 GMT

    ~Trego out so score likely levelish after first innings here's hoping we can score 11 more runs! Every bonus points can count just imagine if Somerset had scored 1 more in 2010.

  • Samuel on May 24, 2012, 10:10 GMT

    On KP-gate, he probably didn't need to say anything, but being fined for an opinion is never a good thing for me; it sets a precedent I'm not particularly comfortable with.

    Not sure what the weather is like down in Taunton, but up the road here in Bath the day has started disappointingly cloudy, and it's also quite muggy. Maybe a day for a swinging ball then - hopefully Trego can put his foot down, smash a few quick runs to nip us into a small lead, and we can set about them. Watching the highlights on the ECB app both Compton and Hildreth looked in sublime touch, as did most of the batsmen who got on the pitch - it's been a game of wasted starts, but it's shaping up to be an exciting game.

  • Courtney on May 24, 2012, 10:08 GMT

    Croissants and Americano? Hardly British

  • Derek Grabham on May 24, 2012, 9:50 GMT

    Waarwickshire seem to running on good form this year. Dont think they lost a match yet. Still long way to go, though...

  • Dave the Eagle on May 24, 2012, 9:48 GMT

    KP isn't the sharpest tool in the box and this is all a bit handbags really. Mountains and molehills.

    On a more positive note, the Bears are in another strong position and I hope they will finish the day about 150 ahead.

    However I would also like them to be about 8/9 wickes down at that point so they can't bat all day tomorrow and waste a winning position - as seems to be a trend.

  • Jack Sheldon on May 24, 2012, 9:39 GMT

    Good Morning.

    This is my second attempt to tell you my thoughts on Nick Knight/KP-gate, as the first attempt wouldn't submit because I'd put my e-mail address in wrong...

    Anyway, I think that KP was being pretty nasty (and stupid) in criticising somebody doing an honest job (it wasn't him who decided he should cover Tests), and who was sure to see or hear about his comments. However, it is true that what he said probably reflects the general public view that Knight is the weak link in a team of superstars, many of whom are superior pundits (e.g. Atherton, Hussain, Holding). KP shouldn't say anything as Knight has to analyse him, and is now in a difficult position when it comes to interviewing him etc. in the future.

    Should the ECB have fined him? Personally, I don't think so, even if the fine will have little effect on him.

  • Derek Grabham on May 24, 2012, 9:35 GMT

    Wish I was at Taunton watching Somerset v Durham, should be an intriguing day (all depends on Trego's batting)and a nice day too!! Why do we have to work on a lovely summer day? At least I will be watching on Sunday, CB40 game against Hampshire, weather permitting!!

  • Simon on May 24, 2012, 9:24 GMT

    On a couple of websites I have seen mention of the ecb signing a £135m deal with ESPN to show county cricket in Asia, but nothing reported on mainstream sites (such as this one, the ecb, bbc etc). I was wondering if this is true and if you are planning on reporting on this and providing details. If true, it is great news for county cricket, the counties, players and ultimately spectators.

  • Nick C on May 24, 2012, 9:20 GMT

    On KP all blown wildly out of proportion. I see his point Knight hardly is of vintage Test pedigree. However neither is Aggers and he spearheads the TMS coverage. Knight is good commentator and so should stay or are we really suggesting to bring Bob Willis back?

    On the Somerset/Durham, I think the fact Durham haven't exerted authority plays into Somerset hands. If we're batting by about mid-morning tomorrow in our 2nd innings I doubt Durham's total will be anything that can't be chased down.

  • David Hopps on May 24, 2012, 8:48 GMT

    If it makes you feel any better, he won't be getting the croissant and white Americano through his exes.

  • jj on May 24, 2012, 8:40 GMT

    i want your job.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • jj on May 24, 2012, 8:40 GMT

    i want your job.

  • David Hopps on May 24, 2012, 8:48 GMT

    If it makes you feel any better, he won't be getting the croissant and white Americano through his exes.

  • Nick C on May 24, 2012, 9:20 GMT

    On KP all blown wildly out of proportion. I see his point Knight hardly is of vintage Test pedigree. However neither is Aggers and he spearheads the TMS coverage. Knight is good commentator and so should stay or are we really suggesting to bring Bob Willis back?

    On the Somerset/Durham, I think the fact Durham haven't exerted authority plays into Somerset hands. If we're batting by about mid-morning tomorrow in our 2nd innings I doubt Durham's total will be anything that can't be chased down.

  • Simon on May 24, 2012, 9:24 GMT

    On a couple of websites I have seen mention of the ecb signing a £135m deal with ESPN to show county cricket in Asia, but nothing reported on mainstream sites (such as this one, the ecb, bbc etc). I was wondering if this is true and if you are planning on reporting on this and providing details. If true, it is great news for county cricket, the counties, players and ultimately spectators.

  • Derek Grabham on May 24, 2012, 9:35 GMT

    Wish I was at Taunton watching Somerset v Durham, should be an intriguing day (all depends on Trego's batting)and a nice day too!! Why do we have to work on a lovely summer day? At least I will be watching on Sunday, CB40 game against Hampshire, weather permitting!!

  • Jack Sheldon on May 24, 2012, 9:39 GMT

    Good Morning.

    This is my second attempt to tell you my thoughts on Nick Knight/KP-gate, as the first attempt wouldn't submit because I'd put my e-mail address in wrong...

    Anyway, I think that KP was being pretty nasty (and stupid) in criticising somebody doing an honest job (it wasn't him who decided he should cover Tests), and who was sure to see or hear about his comments. However, it is true that what he said probably reflects the general public view that Knight is the weak link in a team of superstars, many of whom are superior pundits (e.g. Atherton, Hussain, Holding). KP shouldn't say anything as Knight has to analyse him, and is now in a difficult position when it comes to interviewing him etc. in the future.

    Should the ECB have fined him? Personally, I don't think so, even if the fine will have little effect on him.

  • Dave the Eagle on May 24, 2012, 9:48 GMT

    KP isn't the sharpest tool in the box and this is all a bit handbags really. Mountains and molehills.

    On a more positive note, the Bears are in another strong position and I hope they will finish the day about 150 ahead.

    However I would also like them to be about 8/9 wickes down at that point so they can't bat all day tomorrow and waste a winning position - as seems to be a trend.

  • Derek Grabham on May 24, 2012, 9:50 GMT

    Waarwickshire seem to running on good form this year. Dont think they lost a match yet. Still long way to go, though...

  • Courtney on May 24, 2012, 10:08 GMT

    Croissants and Americano? Hardly British

  • Samuel on May 24, 2012, 10:10 GMT

    On KP-gate, he probably didn't need to say anything, but being fined for an opinion is never a good thing for me; it sets a precedent I'm not particularly comfortable with.

    Not sure what the weather is like down in Taunton, but up the road here in Bath the day has started disappointingly cloudy, and it's also quite muggy. Maybe a day for a swinging ball then - hopefully Trego can put his foot down, smash a few quick runs to nip us into a small lead, and we can set about them. Watching the highlights on the ECB app both Compton and Hildreth looked in sublime touch, as did most of the batsmen who got on the pitch - it's been a game of wasted starts, but it's shaping up to be an exciting game.