Yorkshire cool title talk despite thumping win
Yorkshire 422 (Finch 110, Bairstow 68, Lees 64, Pyrah 62) beat Warwickshire 228 (Patel 63*, Pyrah 3-37, Brooks 3-63) and 186 (Patterson 3-26, Sidebottom 3-31) by an innings and 8 runs
When Yorkshire win they tend to do it emphatically, which is no bad thing of course but requires steps to ensure that the accompanying euphoria does not give rise to over-confidence.
After watching his side dismiss Warwickshire for 186 in their second innings, to win with more than a day to spare, coach Jason Gillespie will allow his players a night to relax in Birmingham this evening - where team-mate Joe Root can recommend the odd place to avoid - but it will be back to work on Friday, with a string of T20 matches to keep them busy ahead of their next Championship action against Durham back in Leeds on Monday week.
"The lads deserve to go out and celebrate this win but that is as far as we are looking at the moment," Gillespie said. "We are not thinking about the title at this stage. Things can change very rapidly in the Championship, as you know. You can't take any opponent lightly.
"But, considering the personnel changes we had to make, this was a fantastic win. To have guys coming in and getting the job done as they did was very encouraging.
"Rich Pyrah came in, knew what his job was and did it very well. He took three important wickets in the first innings and a nice 60-odd with the bat, he really stepped up."
He spoke glowingly, too, of Karl Carver, the the 18-year-old left-arm spinner, who wrapped up the match when Boyd Rankin became his third debut victim.
"For an 18-year-old kid coming in for his debut, Karl looked right at home and bowled well," he said. "I was very impressed. I was pleased with all the bowlers today. They stuck to a plan and were ruthless, pitching the ball up and getting their guys on the front foot and it paid off for us."
Gillespie's sentiments were largely echoed by his captain, Andrew Gale, who was honest enough to admit that his players got ahead of themselves a little last year when the title beckoned and the race turned on a defeat to Durham at Scarborough. Their four wins - two over Warwickshire and two over Northamptonshire - have all been by wide margins, by an innings twice against the former.
"Last season we might have got carried away, thinking about the Championship," Gale said. "This season we have not even spoken about the title. I just keep hammering it home to them about doing their processes, just to keep to keep going about business, keep trying to win matches session by session."
Warwickshire's bid to save the game began this morning with a deficit of 194 and started poorly. Varun Chopra, who remains badly out of form, was leg-before to Sidebottom for five as his poor run continued. The opener, spoken of not too long ago as Test contender, has topped 1,000 runs in each of the last three seasons but has only 281 from 15 innings so far.
Jim Troughton, seemingly looking to glance the ball off hips but spooning a catch to backward square leg, looked out of sorts and Dougie Brown, the Warwickshire director of cricket, admitted afterwards that the Warwickshire captain was in some discomfort. The shot to which he was out certainly raised doubts about how mobile he is after his back surgery in the winter.
The damage of those two dismissals was partially repaired by Sam Hain and William Porterfield but Hain fell to a full delivery from Steve Patterson just before lunch, giving the session to Yorkshire.
Thereafter, Warwickshire's bid to hang on grimly never carried much conviction. Ryan Sidebottom, still the class act among Yorkshire's bowlers, found the edge as Tim Ambrose drove, then had William Porterfield caught behind with a fine ball that lifted and left him. The Irishman had battled away for more than three hours for his 43.
Chris Woakes and Rikki Clarke adopted a more positive approach and progress was made towards prolonging the contest until Woakes edged Patterson and Adam Lyth, who had taken a good catch to remove Ambrose, hung on to another, diving to his right at second slip. He left the field soon afterwards for running repairs to a finger but the damage is not serious.
Clarke fell to Patterson, who took a good low catch with one hand in his follow-through, before Carver picked up two of the final three wickets to fall, sparking Yorkshire joy by trapping Rankin leg before.