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Myles Hodgson at Headingley
May 19, 2012
Hampshire 427 and 191 for 2 dec (Carberry 61*, Katich 61*) drew with Yorkshire 399 for 9 dec (McGrath 106*, Jaques 93)
Yorkshire may well have made a public declaration of their desire to play attacking cricket in the aftermath of last week's stunning victory at Bristol but sometimes even the most cavalier of intentions are defeated by the weather and their draw against Hampshire resulted in a more old-fashioned finish.
As final days go, there could not have been a bigger contrast between the thrills and spills of Yorkshire's successful chase of 400 and the sedate close to play at Headingley, with both sides seeming to accept little chance of a positive result almost as soon as bad light and drizzle delayed the start until 12.30pm, losing 24 overs from the day's allocation.
The time lost ensured a traditional final-day's fare without the prospect of either county winning, and both sides were happy to go through the motions once Hampshire resumed 49 runs ahead on 21 for 1. Yorkshire did make some impression on the scoreboard, Iain Wardlaw finding Jimmy Adams' edge shortly after a delayed lunch, but otherwise both teams played out time.
Hampshire grumbled about the timing of Yorkshire's declaration the previous day, with captain Adams claiming: "It could have kept more options open if they had declared earlier, but we had to concentrate on our own game to bowl them out and, unfortunately, we weren't able to do that." What sort of target Hampshire would have been comfortable setting after the pyrotechnics of Bristol is also open to speculation.
Yorkshire were happy to rotate their bowlers, and indeed used seven in total during a day's play which must have been frustrating for the handful of spectators, who at least had the chance to witness Jonny Bairstow's maiden Test innings from the Long Room as a result of the delayed start.
Once play did resume, Michael Carberry set the tone by taking 35 minutes to hit his first runs of the day and batting for nearly three hours to finish unbeaten on 61, when both sides accepted the draw with Hampshire 219 runs ahead on 191 for 2.
At least those present got their first chance to see Mitchell Starc, the Australia left-arm fast bowler, in a Yorkshire sweater for the first time. Denied the opportunity to make his debut earlier through a visa irregularity, he made his first appearance on 12th-man duties having been discounted from making his debut in this match after a gruelling spell of 14 flights in 12 days.
"Mitchell has been training and we just thought it was too much of an ask to play him against Hampshire after all the issues and the amount of travel he's done," Jason Gillespie, Yorkshire's head coach, said. "It wouldn't have been fair to the lad to come in when you want to try and impress for a new team. I don't think picking him for this match would have given him the best chance to succeed.
"He's a great lad who works incredibly hard and brings that X-factor. He has genuine pace and he can bowl 90mph and swing the ball and anyone who bowls that pace and swings it is going to be a dangerous customer."
Instead, 22-year-old Starc will make his debut in Sunday's CB40 match against Derbyshire Falcons at Headingley - the first of three such matches in the next week - before making his first Championship start at home to Northamptonshire in a fortnight.
Yorkshire are still to determine how long Starc will be at their disposal following his call-up to the Australia A squad to tour England later this summer. Assuming he is not also required for a pre-tour training camp, Starc will definitely miss three Championship matches, up to four CB40 games and a T20 quarter-final, should Yorkshire qualify, so he is keen to maximise his involvement with Yorkshire while he can.
"It's been a bit of back and forth but I'm glad to be here now," Starc said. "I've had a few sessions with the seconds and hopefully I can get out there and play a bit of cricket tomorrow. When I finally got here and got settled the sleeping patterns weren't too bad. I'm a little bit fatigued but sleeping wise I'm pretty good. I'm just glad to be here, running around and I'm raring to go."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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