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Les Smith at Trent Bridge
September 3, 2013
Nottinghamshire 14 for 3 trail Warwickshire 298 (Chopra 76, Patel 66*, Fletcher 5-46, Adams 4-77) by 284 runs
There was an audible sigh in the voice of the Trent Bridge PA announcer when he delivered Michael Lumb's mode of dismissal and score just before close of play. Nottinghamshire had lost three wickets in the first four overs of their innings and Warwickshire were firmly in control. Notts have not yet secured Division One survival and there was an air of weary resignation among their supporters in the New Stand.
A flourish with the bat late in the day by New Zealand international Jeetan Patel, batting at No. 9, had put Warwickshire in a position to press their advantage. Patel has 276 Test match runs - not that many but scored at the highest level. His highest Championship score this year is 78 not out, made in his previous match, and there was nothing about the way he went about his business here to suggest he wouldn't have surpassed that had he not run out of partners when was on 66.
Patel was the senior partner in the day's key partnership. When he was joined by 18-year-old wicketkeeper Peter McKay, playing only his second first-class match, Warwickshire were on 192 for 8 and it seemed they might be fortunate to reach 200. As it was, the pair put on 88, the biggest partnership of the innings. McKay made 33, 16 of them batting with a runner after he sustained a leg injury that prevented him from keeping wicket at the end of the day. Patel finished with 66 off just 76 balls, with nine boundaries.
Warwickshire's other significant stand featured Varun Chopra and Laurie Evans, who put on 73 for the fourth wicket. Chopra looked in complete control from the moment he faced the first ball of the match until he swished at a wide ball from Luke Fletcher and gave wicketkeeper Chris Read the first of two brilliant diving catches in successive overs. It was Evans who went next, off the bowling of Andre Adams.
Notts players in early IPL talks
Darren Maddy scored 47 valuable runs in the middle order and also contributed to the day's moment of hilarity. Chris Woakes turned Ajmal Shahzad behind square on the leg side and Read ran round from behind the stumps to field. Woakes was so surprised when Maddy called for a quick single that he slipped, fell flat on his face, and dropped his bat. He scrambled to his feet and scampered batless, more in hope than expectation, towards the bowler's end. He was run out by a distance.
The mainstays of the Nottinghamshire bowling were Fletcher, now Nottinghamshire's leading Championship wicket-taker, and Adams. Fletcher nagged on a good length and occasionally shook batsmen up with a fast short ball. Former New Zealand seamer Adams, now 38, delivered his brisk medium pace off an economical run and found movement in the air and off the seam. Both took four wickets.
Nottinghamshire's cause was not helped by some slack work in the field after lunch. Read had an almost unblemished day, taking four catches, but he was one of two players to miss tricky but catchable chances, the other being Lumb who couldn't hold on to a Keith Barker shot in the gully.
When the Nottinghamshire innings began there were five overs left in the day. In the first Alex Hales played no shot to a Barker inswinger and lost his off stump. In the second, nightwatchman Fletcher was too late on a quick Maurice Chambers delivery and lost his middle stump and then when Lumb edged Chambers to second slip the PA man wasn't able to conceal his dismay.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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