Gloucestershire v Surrey, Bristol, 4th day

Gloucestershire's batsmen collapse once again

September 16, 2010

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Surrey 186 and 180 for 3 dec. beat Gloucestershire 106 for 5 dec. and 250 by 10 runs

Gloucestershire suffered another alarming batting collapse to concede victory to Surrey by 10 runs on the final day of the County Championship Second Division match at Bristol. Set 261 to win in 74 overs, the home side appeared to be cruising at 216 for 4 with Chris Dent and Hamish Marshall well established. But Marshall's dismissal sparked a calamitous slide in which six wickets fell for the addition of just 34 runs as Gloucestershire were dismissed for 250.

Pace bowler Jade Dernbach and leg spinner Chris Schofield did the damage, returning figures of 4 for 55 and 4 for 63 respectively to send Gloucestershire tumbling to their ninth Championship defeat of a disappointing summer.

Although there was little at stake for either side other than pride, Surrey's 17-point haul was nevertheless sufficient to haul them above arch-rivals Middlesex in the final Second Division table. For their part, Gloucestershire were left to reflect on another feeble performance with the bat, their Achilles heel throughout the campaign.

At one stage, they looked odds-on favourites to chase down their target thanks to teenage batsman Chris Dent. The England Under-19 left-hander dominated stands of 88 and 89 with New Zealanders James Franklin and Hamish Marshall respectively and looked set to register his maiden first-class hundred.

Twice out for 98 at Derby in May and Northampton last month, the Backwell-based 19-year-old reached 94 from 194 balls on this occasion before losing his wicket, bowled by the wily Schofield in the act of sweeping. It was Marshall's departure, caught behind off Dernbach for 51, that inexorably altered the course of the game.

Schofield pinned an unwell Jon Batty lbw for one in his next over and then accounted for Dent to put the skids under Gloucestershire. Jon Lewis attempted to cut Dernbach and was bowled without scoring, but there remained hope for the home side while Chris Taylor was still at large.

Careful to keep the strike, he represented the biggest threat to Surrey's prospects of completing an unlikely success. Gloucestershire required only another 11 runs when the Bristolian was utterly undone by a Dernbach yorker, having scored 28. And it was all over next ball, Anthony Ireland playing on to leave Gemaal Hussain one not out and spark noisy Surrey celebrations.

Eager to make a game of it, the visitors earlier declared their second innings on 180 for 3. Gloucestershire played their part in contriving an exciting finale, serving up some friendly bowling to hasten the declaration.

Occasional offspinners Chris Taylor and Will Porterfield offered all the encouragement Surrey needed during the morning session, Rory Hamilton-Brown and Tom Lancefield filling their boots as the Londoners added 81 runs in eight overs.

Lancefield harvested an unbeaten 67 from 99 balls and hit 12 fours, while skipper Hamilton-Brown made 50 not out from just 31 deliveries in an innings liberally studded with 11 fours.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by sgh142 on (September 17, 2010, 11:55 GMT)

Maximum6, completely agree with you but that begs the question, what was the point in bringing in Pietersen to take a place away from a developing player. He's not interested in County connections so the couple of games he played were setting Surrey backward, great shame.

Posted by CricketingStargazer on (September 17, 2010, 8:57 GMT)

Gloucestershire's campaign has fallen apart in the last few weeks. An unexpected defeat knocked them out of the CB40 when they looked set to qualify. The County Championship campaign ended with, I believe, three defeats, the worst of them against the wooden spoonists, having dismissed them for 44 on the first day. It's not that the side is without talent: the bowling attack has been superb; the batting has a lot of talent, but has failed to deliver for several seasons now. It points to some deep malaise in the dressing room that the batting has failed so consistently for so long despite having players of the quality of Spearman, Batty, Marshall, Gidman, Taylor and Franklin to call upon. To lose so badly to the Division's bottom two sides in the last two matches is unforgiveable.

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (September 16, 2010, 18:26 GMT)

I'm glad Surrey pulled off another win. They finished 7th in Div 2, but I feel really optimistic about them for the next few seasons. Every match seems to bring a new name or just a side full of young players. Obviously the batting is Ramprakash driven, and he could be considered as valuable an asset to Surrey as any player in the Championship to the other 17. But the players coming through represent a really good long term prospect, and they have a naturally adventurous player as their leader. I think rich dividends are just around the corner.

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