Chanderpaul guides Derbyshire chase
Derbyshire 372 (Madsen 80, Chanderpaul 73, Slater 70, Durston 58, Howell 4-68) and 208 for 4 (Godleman 54, Chanderpaul 52*) beat Gloucestershire 356 (Tavare 135, W Gidman 125, Taylor 5-58) and 219 (Marshall 71, Wainwright 3-64) by six wickets
Shivnarine Chanderpaul's cool head saw Derbyshire to a six-wicket LV=County Championship win over Gloucestershire after a see-saw contest at Cheltenham.
The experienced West Indian was unbeaten on 52 as his side reached their last-day target of 204 to win on a pitch that offered some assistance to the bowlers throughout.
Gloucestershire had been bowled out for 219 in their second innings from an overnight position of 137 for 5. Hamish Marshall was the last man out for 71 as left-arm spinner David Wainwright claimed three wickets.
It looked a testing enough target for Derbyshire with the wicket showing signs of wear, but Billy Godleman and Ben Slater eased any nerves with an opening stand of 81.
When both fell in quick succession the outcome was still in doubt. But skipper Wayne Madsen helped steady things with a solid 35 and Wes Durston stroked an attractive 27 off 19 balls before Chanderpaul ensured there were no late alarms.
As Durston acknowledged: "Shiv has been in that sort of situation so many times in his career and is the perfect guy to have batting for you.
"We needed him to be solid at one end and that enabled me to be positive at a time when there might have been a few nerves in the dressing room."
Derbyshire took 22 points to Gloucestershire's four from a game that provided some compelling entertainment for a Festival crowd, who basked in unbroken last-day sunshine.
The home side began with hopes that 200-plus would be defendable and looked set to build a bigger lead than that when Marshall and nightwatchman Tom Smith advanced the score to 176 before Smith was run out for 33 by Slater at short-leg as he slipped having advanced down the pitch to Wainwright.
Marshall reached a studied 131-ball half-century, with seven fours, and needed some assistance from the late order to put Derbyshire under real pressure.
Instead, with the ball turning, Wainwright and Durston cleaned up the tail as the last four wickets fell for 43. Wainwright finished with three for 64 and Durston 2 for 22.
Derbyshire's first task was to see off the new ball as they approached their target. Godleman and Slater did that to good effect, Godleman reaching 50 off 77 balls, with six fours and a six.
But just when Gloucestershire seemed to be wilting, Slater was brilliantly caught one-handed to his left by Michael Klinger at slip off Tom Smith and Godleman followed in the next over, caught behind at the second attempt by Adam Rouse off Jack Taylor.
Madsen and Chanderpaul took few risks in a stand of 52, which was ended when Madsen fell lbw playing across a ball from Liam Norwell.
But Durston, who had looked in prime form in the first innings, again played aggressively and his 19-ball innings, including five fours, took Derbyshire close to victory.
After he fell, Chanderpaul felt at ease to abandon his watchful approach and launched sixes off Smith and Taylor, the second one ending the game and bringing him his half-century off 80 balls.
Gloucestershire director of cricket John Bracewell said: "If we had set Derbyshire 240 it would have been a fantastic game. We paid for a crazy half hour before lunch.
"The pitch produced an excellent game of cricket. There were positives for us, but the players need to perform at their best more often as a unit."