Yorks complete important win
Yorkshire 344 (Lyth 95, Allenby 4-61) and 111 for 2 (Lyth 50) beat Glamorgan 272 (Bragg 92, Patterson 4-49) and 182 (Patterson 4-47) by eight wickets
Yorkshire cruised to a second successive victory in the County Championship to leave themselves poised for a final promotion push next week at Chelmsford. Their target of 111 never looked like a challenge, and they knocked them off for the loss of two wickets at 4.45pm on the third day.
While a revitalised Adam Lyth's 145 runs in the match leap off the scorecard, it would be short sighted to ignore the tremendous contribution of Steven Patterson, whose name, according to Yorkshire captain Andrew Gale, "has been first on the team sheet all year". It has not been difficult to see why over the course of three days during which he has taken 8 for 96, his consistency underlined by his almost identical figures in the two Glamorgan innings, and his contribution to a crucial ninth wicket partnership with Ryan Sidebottom.
Glamorgan resumed this morning on 29 for 2, Steven Patterson having landed two damaging blows towards the end of the evening session on Wednesday. They moved on with apparent comfort for the first 40 minutes of the day, playing on a pitch which had lost much of the green tint that characterised it previously, but then lost three wickets for one run. Will Bragg attempted to on drive Moin Ashraf but he missed and his leg stump performed cartwheels.
The other overnight not out batsman, Stewart Walters, was the architect of his own demise in Ashraf's next over, launching a big drive well away from his body and thick edging to wicketkeeper Andy Hodd. This punctuated the game's most tense passage of play.
Bragg's dismissal brought David Lloyd out for his second innings in first class cricket. His first, on Tuesday, had lasted twelve minutes and eight balls before he was caught behind off Steven Patterson. This time he stayed for three minutes longer, the same number of balls, and fell to the same combination. This time there was little he could do about a ball that lifted and left him, and it was difficult not to feel sympathy for the young batsman as he made his forlorn way back to the pavilion with a pair on debut.
The introduction of Anthony McGrath's under-rated, economical bowling in Glamorgan's first innings had brought two middle order wickets, and today he performed the trick again, trapping Ben Wright when he went neither forward or backward in front of his stumps. Meanwhile Jim Allenby was batting as assertively as he had, briefly, in the first innings, but he was two short of a merited half century when Ashraf knocked back his leg stump to collect his third wicket of the day.
Graham Wagg and Mark Wallace added useful runs but Wallace fell to the first ball of a Sidebottom spell, and Wagg was last man out giving Hodd his eighth catch of the game behind the stumps - a good way to mark signing a permanent deal at Headingley.
Yorkshire's openers Joe Root and Adam Lyth raced to 49 for 0 by tea, Lyth dominating the scoring as he had done in the first innings. But Root did not last long after the interval, being trapped lbw by a full length John Glover delivery. Lyth went untroubled to 50, then inexplicably attempted to reverse sweep Dean Cosker's left arm spin and was also lbw.
Phil Jaques and Gary Ballance saw off the remaining 48 runs comfortably, and the 22 points that Yorkshire take from the match keep them firmly in contention for promotion from Division Two going into their last fixture against Essex next week, a game which Andrew Gale expects to be a tough one.
As well as recognising Patterson's importance to Yorkshire's successes this year, Gale singled out Moin Ashraf's "game-changing spell" this morning, and Lyth's efforts with the bat. He acknowledged that Lyth has had "a rough time over the last couple of years, but in the last six weeks he's really come into his own and shown what a class player is."
Whatever the size of the task facing Yorkshire next week, Gale said that a situation like this "is what you play cricket for and where we wanted to be at the start of the season."