June 30, 2001

Kirby follows batsmen's lead as Yorkshire overwhelm Leicestershire

Yorkshire's new bowling sensation Steven Kirby blasted out six Leicestershire batsmen at Headingley as his former county were dismissed for only 174 after the CricInfo Championship leaders had piled up 500 in their first innings.

Kirby, who played for Leicestershire Seconds before being released, took seven for 50 on his Yorkshire debut in their last home match after replacing Matthew Hoggard in the middle of the Kent game.

He was in the same dynamic mood again as he sent back Leicestershire's first three batsmen in his opening spell and later returned to wreak more havoc in two further stints.

Darren Maddy was the first of Kirby's victims when he was caught behind, Ben Smith was lbw in his next over and Dan Marsh soon had his middle stump ripped out.

Opener Iain Sutcliffe survived Kirby's initial burst but became his fourth scalp when he returned to have the left-hander caught behind and Jon Dakin and Phil DeFreitas followed in consecutive overs later on.

Kirby had still not finished his heroics, however, because he then took a good catch on the third man boundary off Chris Silverwood to send back Aftab Habib who was on his second visit to the crease after earlier retiring hurt when struck painfully on the left thumb.

Yorkshire had resumed the second day on 299 for three and their batting was dominated by Darren Lehmann who became the third centurion of the innings, Matthew Wood and Michael Lumb achieving three figures the previous day.

It was the first time that three Yorkshire batsmen had hit centuries in the same Championship innings since the match against Gloucestershire at Bristol in 1975 when the batsmen concerned were Michael Lumb's father, Richard, Geoff Boycott and John Hampshire.

Lehmann finally departed for 104 off 133 balls with 13 fours, leaving Championship debutant Richard Dawson to entertain the crowd with some spectacular hitting near the end of the innings when he thrashed DeFreitas for 21 in one over, including two sixes off consecutive balls. Dawson was last out for 37 from 41 deliveries.

Leicestershire trail by 326 on the first innings and Yorkshire look in excellent shape to go on to win their fifth match of the season and extend their lead still further at the top of the Division One table.