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Central Group, Worcester, August 08 - 11, 2020, Bob Willis Trophy
455/8 & 276/6d
(T:358) 374 & 141/7

Match drawn


Alex Gidman defends late declaration as Glamorgan cling on for draw

Worcestershire fall three wickets short after setting 358 in 51 overs

Chris Cooke catches a return throw, Somerset v Glamorgan, Taunton, Bob Willis Trophy, August 4, 2020

Chris Cooke equalled the Glamorgan record for dismissals in a first-class match  •  Getty Images

Worcestershire 455 for 8 (Libby 184, D'Oliveira 174) and 276 for 6 declared (Mitchell 94) drew with Glamorgan 374 (Carlson 79, Root 118, Wagg 54, Leach 4-67) and 141 for 7 (Cooke 74)
Worcestershire head coach Alex Gidman has defended the timing of his side's declaration after they fell three wickets short of a final-day win against Glamorgan.
Worcestershire took a 179-run lead into the fourth day at New Road, but batted on until after lunch to set Glamorgan an unrealistic target of 358 to win in the final innings from 51 overs. They were reduced to 5 for 3 after 4.3 overs, but Chris Cooke's 74 helped them cling on, with the captains bumping fists with two balls remaining.
"It was spot on, the decision," Gidman said. "It's been hard work, so physically we wanted to try and make sure we could really put it in, and anything over that number of overs in the field would have become really hard work.
"Equally and probably more importantly, we just felt the mindset of Glamorgan needed to be a defensive mindset. It is actually really hard to defend and, if a team had something to go for, it could have been hard work. We needed to be able to keep fielders around the bat and keep that pressure on.
"On that exact wicket, in the last few years there have been some very high chases which was something we were wary of. It didn't deteriorate. It was still an excellent wicket, a good batting wicket, so we were very conscious of that when we made that decision.
"Does eight points for draw come into mindset? Definitely. We are in a competition. We've got five games. We've drawn that game. Yes, we would have liked to have won it but the next best is a draw and there are a lot of points up for grabs for a draw in this campaign."
It was a day to remember for Cooke, who had equalled the Glamorgan record for the most dismissals in a game before his invaluable innings eased fears of a spectacular collapse.
Worcestershire had resumed on day four on 98 for 2 - an overall lead of 179 - and Daryl Mitchell pressed home their advantage with a composed 94. He had looked set to complete his sixth first-class ton against Glamorgan but then gave Kieran Bull the charge just before lunch and was stumped by Cooke.
Tom Fell had earlier given Mitchell solid support during a third-wicket stand of 85 in 21 overs before he tried to work away a legside delivery from Timm van der Gugten and feathered a low catch to Cooke.
Worcestershire batted on for a further eight overs after lunch and lost Brett D'Oliveira and Riki Wessels to the Cooke-Graham Wagg combination in the same over. The latter of those scalps enabled Cooke to equal the Glamorgan record for the most dismissals in a game: it was his ninth victim of the match and only Colin Metson and Mark Wallace had achieved that feat previously for Glamorgan.
Some improvised hitting from Ben Cox and Jack Haynes helped them add 44 in six overs before the declaration came.
Glamorgan were immediately on the back foot and Joe Leach broke through with his second delivery when Nick Selman was trapped lbw. He enjoyed another success when Charlie Hemphrey offered no stroke and departed in the same manner.
In between, Dillon Pennington had accounted for Kiran Carlson who looked to work the ball to leg and outside edged through to keeper Cox.
First innings century-maker Billy Root and Cooke added 82 in 22 overs to calm Glamorgan's nerves before the former on 34 was caught down the legside off Pennington. Cooke went on to complete his half-century from 78 balls with his tenth boundary.
Charlie Morris gave Worcestershire another ray of hope when Tom Cullen went lbw with still 12.5 overs remaining. Then Dan Douthwaite became the fourth leg-before victim of the innings in the next over to give part-time offspinner Jake Libby his first wicket for his new county, but Cooke stood firm until he pushed half forward to Libby and saw the ball roll back onto his stumps.
But Wagg and Bull managed to block out for 15 more balls to see out the draw.

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