Wily Henderson keeps scoring down
Derbyshire 238 for 5 v Leicestershire
Half-centuries from Wayne Madsen and Daniel Redfern gave Derbyshire the edge at the end of a tough first day in their County Championship clash with Leicestershire at Grace Road.
Derbyshire, who beat their East Midlands neighbours by an innings and 32 runs just two weeks ago, were 238 for 5 at stumps despite a superb spell of bowling from Leicestershire veteran Claude Henderson. The left-arm spinner finished the day with figures of 3 for 69 from 33 overs. At one stage Derbyshire looked in real trouble at 174 for 5, but recovered courtesy of an unbroken partnership of 64 between Redfern and Luke Sutton.
Having won the toss it proved hard work for Derbyshire's batsmen throughout the morning session with the variable bounce on a slow pitch causing plenty of problems. The conditions certainly favoured the bowlers and Leicestershire would have been disappointed to claim only one wicket by lunch.
Madsen should have been out on 14 when he edged a delivery from Matthew Hoggard that reared outside the off stump only for Jacques Du Toit to put down the catch at slip.
The introduction of Nadeem Malik brought Leicestershire the breakthrough in the 15th over with the total at 44. Malik produced a fine delivery that swung in and found the inside edge of Wesley Durston's bat and this time wicket keeper Tom New took the catch.
Usman Khawaja, who made his Australia Test debut against England in the winter, signalled his intentions with four crisp boundaries off Wayne White and Derbyshire looked in a sound position on 82 for 1 at lunch.
But the game then swung Leicestershire's way as Henderson produced an outstanding exhibition of spin bowling claiming three wickets for 60 runs during an unbroken spell of 30 overs. It was Hoggard who struck first however, having Khawaja caught behind for 35 in his third over after lunch. An edged four off Nathan Buck brought Madsen his half century off 142 balls, before he was trapped lbw trying to force a shot through leg side off a quicker ball from Henderson.
Chesney Hughes, who had been dropped at slip by Will Jefferson off Henderson's bowling, then slashed a catch to point off the spinner. And when Henderson clipped the top of Greg Smith's off-stump with another cleverly flighted delivery shortly after tea, Derbyshire looked in some trouble.
But a battling sixth-wicket stand between Redfern and Sutton restored Derbyshire's grip on the game. Sutton, however, was given a life when he was dropped at slip by Jefferson off the bowling of Malik when he had made 20.
But Redfern, showing great discipline and concentration, reached his 50 off 151 balls, with six fours, and was still there at the close on 58 with Sutton keeping him company on 21.