Monday 25 - Thursday 28 June 2018
Four wickets by Graham Onions and a James Vince century and were the features of an opening day battle for supremacy between Lancashire and Hampshire in this Specsavers County Championship clash.
Vince produced a fine century before falling to Stephen Parry while Onions took 4-64 with at least one wicket in each session to help peg back the visitors who reached the close on 302-6.
Lancashire made two changes from the team that played at Worcester last week with Danny Lamb, who subbed for the injured Joe Mennie at New Road, retaining his place and Arron Lilley coming in for his first match of the season in place of Shivnarine Chanderpaul who has returned home for personal reasons.
Hampshire won the toss and chose to bat, with the game played on the same pitch used 24 hours earlier by England and Australia in the one-day international.
And Lancashire had an early breakthrough when Joe Weatherley edged Onions behind to Dane Vilas for a duck, the ball seaming away and finding the edge.
Jordan Clark was unlucky when Vince gave a difficult chance at extra cover off a leading edge when on 20 and the visitors made the most of that escape with Jimmy Adams helping Vince build the second wicket partnership steadily throughout the rest of the first session.
Vince struck a straight six off Parry in the 22nd over and played several lovely cover drives on his way to a half century from 66 balls. The century partnership arrived shortly afterwards off 140 balls as Hampshire reached lunch on 113-1.
Onions struck in the first over after the break, nipping the ball back to take out Adams’ middle stump without the batsman adding to his lunchtime 44.
But Vince powered on to reach a fine century from 131 balls when sweeping to register his fifteenth four.
It took a great delivery from Stephen Parry to dislodge the Hampshire skipper for 103, the left-arm spinner turning a delivery from middle and leg past Vince’s forward push to hit off stump.
That left the visitors on 187-6 shortly before tea and Onions struck with his third wicket soon after the break when Tom Alsop chopped on for 15.
Sam Northeast battled away to make 41 but he fell to a good catch low down at gully by Rob Jones off Clark to make it 235-5.
Rilee Rossouw and Ian Holland rallied with a 61-run partnership during the final part of the day, Rossouw smashing three consecutive boundaries to get his innings off to a flying start and the left-hander went on to reach his half century from just 58 balls, hitting 9 fours.
Holland became Onions’s fourth victim when edging the new ball behind to Vilas for 24 but Rossouw was still there at the close on 54 not out with Ollie Rayner 0 not out and Hampshire on 302-6.
Lancashire face a stiff challenge following the first two days’ play in this Specsavers County Championship match against Hampshire after the visitors built a commanding total of 451 despite the best efforts of Graham Onions who finished with a five-wicket haul.
Rilee Rossouw turned his overnight half century into an unbeaten innings of 120 to help Hampshire add 149 runs to their overnight 302-6 during the first half of the day.
Alex Davies was the mainstay of the Red Rose reply with his highest score in the Championship this season, an unbeaten 78 and he found good support from skipper Dane Vilas as Lancashire closed on 140-3, still trailing by 311 runs.
Red Rose hopes suffered an early blow in their reply when Keaton Jennings was unfortunate to get a nick off his glove through to wicketkeeper Tom Alsop after shouldering arms to Gareth Berg for 4.
Meanwhile Davies struck two eye-catching boundaries in Kyle Abbott’s first over and later unfurled a glorious straight drive to get his innings off to a typically positive start. The opening batsman then brought the Red Rose fifty up with a nicely timed drive through square leg for four.
But Davies lost two more partners in fairly quick succession with Haseeb Hameed out for 13 when Fidel Edwards brought a delivery back to hit off stump, the batsman offering no shot, and Rob Jones was bowled through the gate by Abbott for 1 to leave Lancashire on 70-3.
Unperturbed Davies moved on to reach his fifty from 87 balls with consecutive boundaries off Abbott in the 27th over found solid support from captain Dane Vilas who had made a steady unbeaten 37 from 73 balls at stumps.
The pair fought back well during the final ninety minutes of the day, doubling the score with a partnership worth 70 runs so far but they go in to the third day with a lot of work still to do.
Earlier Graham Onions struck with the 22nd ball of the morning, trapping Ollie Rayner lbw for 0 to register his second five-wicket haul of the season and give Lancashire the early boost they were looking for.
But a partnership of 86 between Rossouw and Berg put the visitors, who had started the day on 302-6, firmly in the driving seat on another sweltering day at Emirates Old Trafford.
Rossouw had reached 50 off 58 balls with a flurry of boundaries yesterday but his second fifty was far more sedate as the left hander played with greater caution, determined to help Hampshire build towards a big total. He finally reached three figures off 155 balls shortly after lunch having batted for four hours.
Berg provided the perfect support with 49 runs before he top edged a sweep off Parry to Danny Lamb at short fine leg; while Kyle Abbott contributed 20 before he was bowled by Arron Lilley who ended the innings when Fidel Edwards edged behind leaving Rossouw unbeaten on 120 with Hampshire posted an imposing 451 all out.
Lancashire’s initial objective tomorrow will be to reach 302 and avoid the follow-on
Centuries from Alex Davies and Dane Vilas plus 82 by Jordan Clark made it a good day for Lancashire as they drew themselves back on more or less level terms with Hampshire on another red hot day at Emirates Old Trafford.
It was an excellent batting performance by Lancashire who were eventually all out for 411 and only 40 runs behind on first innings.
And there was time for Graham Onions and Tom Bailey to pick up a wicket apiece to leave Hampshire on 66-2, and ahead by 106 runs going in to the final day.
Resuming his innings on 78, Davies was away quickly with a boundary from the sixth ball of the morning.
Otherwise it proved to be cagey start with just 30 runs scored in the first hour as both teams recognised the potential importance of the morning session towards determining the outcome of this game.
Vilas, on 37 overnight, steered Kyle Abbott to the third man ropes to reach his fifty from 114 balls, and his sixth boundary also brought up the 100 partnership off 204 balls.
And Davies went to his ton by square cutting Ollie Rayner to register his 14th four from 176 balls faced as Lancashire made a really good start to the day reaching 208-3 thirty minutes before lunch.
That was the point when Davies cut a wide Ian Holland delivery straight into the hands of Rilee Rossouw at gully, much to his evident frustration, to be out for 115, ending an excellent and vital fourth wicket partnership of 138.
Vilas powered on, reverse sweeping Rayner for four, on his way to reaching his third Red Rose century by thumping Rayner for consecutive boundaries straight after the interval and moving Lancashire up to 251-4.
A further four off Berg two overs later saw the fifty partnership arrive from 86 balls with Jordan Clark, who got off the mark with a thumping cover drive off Holland, playing much the supporting role at that stage as Lancashire steadily closed in on the follow-on target of 302.
A six by Clark off Rayner saw that milestone reached in the 96th over and the pair dominated the afternoon as they extended their alliance to 112 before Vilas was lbw to Kyle Abbott for a magnificent 134 with Lancashire 320-5 in 95th over.
After Danny Lamb was lbw to Ollie Rayner for 3 an enterprising stand of 58 in 10 overs between Clark and Arron Lilley looked like taking the Red Rose to maximum batting points.
Lilley hit five fours in his 28 off 31 balls before edging Ian Holland behind to Tom Alsop and Hampshire, dropping fielders deep, managed to strangle the run scoring to restrict Lancashire to 394-7.
Agonisingly Clark was run out for 82 from a direct hit by James Vince as the last three wickets fell for 17 runs just after tea to leave Lancashire only forty runs behind on 411 all out.
Onions trapped Jimmy Adams lbw for 4 with the score on 12 and Vilas took a good catch down the leg side off Tom Bailey to dismiss Vince for 18 as the visitors reached 66-2 in their second innings at stumps.
Lancashire and Hampshire battled their way to a high-scoring draw in this Specsavers County Championship match at Emirates Old Trafford.
The visitors batted through the day to reach 237-5 in their second innings with opener Joe Weatherley anchoring their innings with a maiden century.
The result takes Lancashire, who gained 11 points, out of the bottom two in the table one point behind Hampshire who received 10 points and three points ahead of Yorkshire who have played one game less.
“I thought the lads fought really hard over the four days and we got ourselves back in a position to put them under pressure,” said Head Coach Glen Chapple. “We fought hard today, tried to make the breakthrough before lunch but unfortunately the chances didn’t quite come.
“It was a good wicket, and the one we had played the international on the day before,” he said. “So it was five days old and it held up a bit better than I expected and didn’t offer as much spin as I thought it would.
“We were without Joe Mennie too which was a loss. He’s been one of our best bowlers this season. He’s fit, he trained today and will be ready to take a full part in the T20 next week.
“Jordan Clark played the third seamers role very well in this game. He enjoyed the extra responsibility and played a really good all-rounder’s role for us.
Looking back over the game Chapple added:
“We’d have liked to have gone past their score yesterday. There was enough really solid batting to maybe do that. In their position, I think they would have felt a bit more pressure. We played some hard cricket and I thought Dane Vilas, Alex Davies and Clarky batted really well.
“And we weren’t at full strength with more youngsters coming in. It was Danny Lamb’s first full game and Rob Jones is also getting a go, and I thought we played really well.
And Chapple was full of praise of the overall effort during the last four days after just one day between the last two games.
“The energy levels on such a hot week were fantastic,” he said.
“Our two opening bowlers, Graham Onions and Tom Bailey, worked unbelievably hard and showed a lot of enthusiasm. This morning they were adamant we could achieve a result. They worked very hard for the team.
“As I said, I can’t fault how the team are operating.
And Chapple had some words of encouragement for Haseeb Hameed who has struggled with the bat this season.
“I really feel for Has at the moment,” he admitted.
“He’s working hard in the nets. He’s playing well and his game is in decent order.
“After the start he’s had to the season there are going to be mental challenges (ahead). There would be with any player.
“We are just encouraging him to keep working hard.”
The fourth day of this game saw Joe Weatherley and Sam Northeast produce a solid defensive display on the final morning as the visitors resumed on 66-2 with a lead of 102.
It took Lancashire fifty minutes to make the breakthrough when Jordan Clark bowled Sam Northeast to end a dogged 53-ball innings of 10.
Weatherley survived a number of alarms, including an edge off Tom Bailey just wide of the slips when on 30, in reaching a three-hour half century with Tom Alsop joining forces to keep the Red Rose attack at bay. The pair posted their fifty partnership from 119 balls just after lunch before Stephen Parry produced a sharply turning ball to bowl Alsop for 33.
Rilee Rossouw was then lbw to Clark (2-18 off 14 overs) for 1 to leave Hampshire on 164-5 with a lead of 204 runs halfway through the day.
But the obdurate Weatherley battled on to reach a maiden first-class century from 210 balls in 5 hours and 5 minutes, to steer the visitors into a position of safety with a lead of 248 runs at tea.
With a draw the inevitable outcome from that point the game meandered along after the break until Hampshire declared on 237-5 at 4.50pm with Weatherley unbeaten after a marathon 375 minutes at the crease on 126.
It was a day of hard work for the Red Rose bowlers on a pitch that provided little assistance although the spinners did extract some slow turn, particularly from the bowlers follow-through.
There is a break from four-day cricket now with the Vitality T20 Blast starting next week, and Lancashire’s next Championship game is the Roses clash at Emirates Old Trafford on 22-25 July.