August 5, 2001

Yorkshire ease worries, but Surrey look doomed

Yorkshire Phoenix moved further away from relegation worries with an emphatic 67 runs win over Surrey Lions at Headingley in the Norwich Union League.

But there appears to be no escape from a drop into Division Two for Surrey who have now lost eight of their nine matches and are firmly embedded to the bottom of the table.

A target of 231 proved well beyond them, despite having Mark Ramprakash and Ian Ward back from the Test match, and although Ramprakash hit a defiant 58 from 81 balls with four boundaries, Surrey still lost their last wicket at 163 with five overs remaining.

The main damage was done by 20-year-old seamer Chris Elstub who made big holes in the early batting by taking three for 22 in his opening spell - his first wickets in the competition - and he later came back to get rid of last man Ed Giddins to end up with four for 25.

Elstub got rid of openers Nadeem Shahid and Ward in the space of five balls and soon afterwards hit Ben Hollioake's off-stump with a swinging delivery.

England strike bowler Matthew Hoggard, playing in his first match since suffering a foot injury, also claimed an important wicket when he had Alistair Brown caught behind without scoring.

Gavin Hamilton compiled a joint career-best 57 to help Yorkshire reach their score of 230 for seven after winning the toss.

The left-hander made his runs off 100 balls with six fours and a six and he and Matthew Wood got the Yorkshire innings off to an excellent start with an opening stand of 94 before Wood was caught behind off Carl Greenidge.

Anthony McGrath drove Martin Bicknell to Alistair Brown at mid-off after making 31 in a second wicket stand of 55 with Hamilton who fell lbw in the 35th over to make it 158 for three.

Yorkshire were rushed to their final total by captain David Byas who blasted 30 off 19 balls while Darren Lehmann was unusually subdued, going to 22 in ten overs before being run out.

Bicknell finished with three for 20 and his figures would have been even more economical if he had not been hit for six in his last over by Hamilton.