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September 21, 2008
Worcestershire 186 for 6 (Solanki 53, Moeen 51) beat Glamorgan 83 (Batty 4-14) by 103 runs
Worcestershire retained their Division One status in some style with a thumping 103-run victory over Glamorgan in Cardiff. After winning the toss, Worcestershire managed a decent but obtainable 186 for 6 in their 40 overs, thanks to half-centuries from Vikram Solanki and Moeen Ali, but their bowlers were the real stars of the day. Glamorgan's top three were extracted for ducks, as they were rolled over for 83 in 23.5 crushingly efficient overs.
It was Dilhara Fernando and his wicked changes of pace who started the rot for Glamorgan. He grabbed Robert Croft and the pinch-hitter David Harrison with consecutive deliveries, before AJ Harris - recently released by Nottinghamshire but more than proving his worth here - followed up with a spell of 6-1-7-3. His first victim was the captain, David Hemp, also for a duck, and by the time he had removed Tom Maynard and the dangerous Mike Powell - the latter via a superb one-handed catch by Stephen Moore at short midwicket - Glamorgan were 35 for 5, and completely out of the reckoning.
Gareth Batty ensured there would be no let-up. Flighting his offbreaks to perfection, he rattled through the middle- and lower-order for Man-of-the-Match figures of 4 for 14 in five overs. Jamie Dalrymple was well caught at leg slip by Moore, as was Ben Wright who muffed an attempted reverse-sweep, while Mark Wallace and Alex Wharf were trapped lbw and bowled respectively. Fernando then applied a fitting coup de grace with the fifth ball of his second spell, as Dean Cosker's off stump was sent cartwheeling.
It was an anticlimactic end to the season for Glamorgan, especially after their morale-boosting Championship victory over Leicestershire on Saturday. Jason Gillespie, in what seems sure to be his final appearance in county cricket, gave them a great start by removing Steve Davies and Moore in quick succession with the new ball, but Solanki's 53 from 89 balls held the top of the order together, before Moeen upped the ante with a frenetic innings of 51 from 52 balls that was notable for his running between the wickets - he managed a total of one four and one six.
Wharf bowled both Moeen and Daryl Mitchell, while Glamorgan's spin twins, Cosker and Croft, picked up a wicket apiece and kept Worcestershire honest in the middle of the innings. But in the final analysis, the team from the top division proved too strong for the pretenders, as the status quo was maintained for this season at least.
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