The Royal London Cup South Group Final Games

The final South Group games in the Royal London Cup, a brief mention of Tapping House and loads of photographs.

INTRODUCTION

We have reached the halfway stage of the last set of matches in the South group of the Royal London Cup. By the end of today we will know who two of the semi-finalists are and who will be playing off for the right to join them. Before looking at today’s matches it is time to reveal all about…

YESTERDAY’S PREDICTIONS

This is what happened in yesterday’s matches:

  • Northamptonshire v Nottinghamshire –  Northamptonshire 325-7 from 50 overs, Nottinghamshire 328-9 from 49.3 overs, Nottinghamshire won by one wicket.
    This one went down to the wire. In the end a magnificent innings by Samit Patel (136 not out) saw Nottinghamshire home. Tom Sole bowled only two overs for Northants (0-17), and my first prediction failed.
  • Derbyshire v WorcetsershireDerbyshire 351-9 from 50 overs, Worcestershire 353-6 from 48.2 overs, Worcestershire won by four wickets.
    130 off 62 balls from Ricky Wessels put Worctesreshire in control of this chase, and with Tom Fell (49 off 56) and Callum Ferguson (103 off 95) also performing well they emerged comfortable winners, spoiling another of my predictions. 
  • Leicestershire v WarwickshireLeicestershire 340 all out from 49.3 overs, Warwickshire 304 all out from 47.1 overs, Leciestershire won by 36 runs.
    Ed Pollock (57) and Robert Yates (66) both got going for Warwickshire, but neither produced a really big score, and nor did anyone else. Tom Taylor ensured that there could be no arguments over player of the match by following his 98 not out with 3-58 and a fine catch. Other than Taylor, Callum Parkinson (brother of Lancashire’s Matt Parkinson) took 1-55 from 10 overs of slow left-arm, and part time spinners Ateeq Javid and Colin Ackerman hac a combined 1-38 from nine, suggesting that they could have been profitably given more overs, just as Warwickshire had missed a trick regarding the offspin of Yates and Banks. I called this one correctly.
  • Durham v Yorkshire no result, Durham 182-2 from 34.2 overs.
    The rain settled this one, ending Durham’s involvement in the competition. 

I had one correct prediction and two wrong ones, putting me on 27/45 overall.

TODAY’S MATCHES

  • Somerset v Surrey Surrey 289-9 from 50 overs.
    Surrey batted well, but could never get right away. Dean Elgar made 64, Ben Foakes 46, Jamie Smith 40 and Ryan Patel 41 not out off 32. FI expect or Somerset the best bowling came from the Overtons, Jamie with 4-64 off nine overs and Craig, continuing his excellent form in the competition, 3-48 from 10. Slow left-armer Roelof Van Der Merwe was economical, recording 1-45 from 10. I predict that Surrey will defend these.
  • Sussex v Glamorgan Sussex 347-7 from 50 overs.
    110 from Laurie Evans, 96 from Luke Wright and 57 not out from David Wiese were the principal contributions to a fine total. Marchant De Lange took 3-74,  22 year-old medium pacer Daniel Douthwaite 2-46 and Lucas Carey 2-64. I expect Sussex to defend these easily.
  • Kent v MiddlesexMiddlesex 380-5 from 50 overs.
    A massive score for Middlesex, dominated by Max Holden, a 21 year-old who bats left handed and bowls right-arm offbreaks, who scored 166 off 139 balls. The other main score was 94 from Kiwi Ross Taylor. No Kent bowler fared at all well. I expect Middlesex to win this with plenty to spare.
  • Essex v Gloucestershire Essex 293 all out from 49.5 overs.
    From a batting point of view this was all about Varun Chopra who scored 156. Leg spinning all-rounder Rishi Patel was next best with 26. Slow left-armer Tom Smith was the pick of the bowlers, emerging with 1-44 from his 10. With Simon Harmer, Tom Westley and possibly Dan Lawrence available to bowl spin of various kinds in addition to Patel I expect Essex to defend these.

Thus my predictions are for wins for Surrey, Sussex, Middlesex and Essex.

BACK TO TAPPING HOUSE

I attended my physio session at Tapping House today and everything went pretty well. We were doing ‘strength and power’ exercises today. Anyway, it was good to get back there, not having been able to go last week.

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GENERAL PHOTOGRAPHS

My usual sign off…

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The Royal London Cup Last North Group Games

A look atr today’s Royal London Cup matches, with predictions as to their outcomes. A feature on offspinning allrounders and lots of photographs.

INTRODUCTION

This post resumes my following of the Royal London Cup, interrupted by a week in hospital. For that reason I am jot going to do an in depth examination of my last set of predictions. For the record I got three right and three wrong, putting me on 26/42 overall. 

TODAY’S MATCHES AND PREDICTIONS

There are four matches in progress today:

  • Northamptonshire v NottinghamshireNorthamptonshire 325-7 from 50 overs.
    Substantial contributions from Vasconcelos (74), Cobb (61), Keogh (71) and Wakely (53) seem to have put Northamptonshire in control of this one. Samit Patel with 2-51 from his 10 overs was the best of the Nottinghamshire bowlers. The fact that a spinner fared best of all Nottingshamhire’s bowlers suggests that offspinner Tom Sole will be important for Northamptonshire, who I confidently expect to defend this total.
  • Derbyshire v WorcestershireDerbyshire 351-9 from 50 overs
    Centuries from Luis Reece and Wayne Madsen, backed up by 43 of 31 balls from Alex Hughes would seem to have given Derbyshire an unassailable total. No Worcestershire bowler deserves to have their figures quoted.
  • Leicestershire v Warwickshire Leicestershire 340 all out from 49.3 overs.
    Useful scores from Harry Dearden (69) and Colin Ackerman (74) did not look like being enough for Leciestershire, but Tom Taylor, mainly a bowler, played an extraordinary innings, making 98 not out off 56 balls to change the complexion of the game. Warwcikshire had two teenagers who supposedly bowl offspin, Liam Banks and Robert Yates, but did not turn to either of them, even though Jeetan Patel, another offspinner, had 2-46 from his 10 overs, and Alex Thomson had 1-39 from his full 10 bowling…off spin. Instead of trying the youngsters Warwickshire allowed Hannon-Dalby (3-85, so at least he got wickets), Miles (1-74), Panayi (1-85 from 9.3) and Will Rhodes (one over for 13) to get hammered. I expect Leicestershire to defend these quite easily.
  • Yorkshire v DurhamDurham 179-2 after 33.1 overs, rain affected
    Yorkshire, already certain of qualification, quite sensibly used this match as a chance to blood some youngsters (this has caused some moaning from those based on the wrong side of The Pennines, as a Durham victory would be bad news for them), and it would appear that they will face a stiff target once the DLS adjustment has been made (when the rain came Durham had 80% of their wickets and 33% of their overs remaining, so I would expect Yorkshire’s target to be in excess of seven an over, maybe more if the match is greatly shortened. The four non-regulars getting a run out for Yorkshire today are Will Fraine, a 22 year old right hand batter, Jared Warner, a 22 year old right-arm fast medium (5 overs for 32 today), Jordan Thompson a 22 year old right arm medium pacer (5 overs for 43 today) and Ben Birkhead, a 20 year old wicketkeeper. Leg spinner Josh Poysden with six overs for 27 was the most economical of the bowlers. Sam Steel made 68 for Durham and Lees was on 50 not when the rain came. Unless the rain wins this one I expect Durham to do so.

In view of the fact that Warwickshire should have used one or both of Banks and Yates and that Leciestershire already have Ackerman bowling his offspin early in the Warwickshire innings I am going to give you an extra feature looking at some…

OFF SPINNING ALL ROUNDERS

In view of the difficulty of accommodating two non-batting spinners (it either means having a long tail to the team or only having two specialist pace bowlers) it is clearly advantageous to have spinners who can bat. Here are five from across cricket’s history who played that role, bowling off-spin and batting well in the middle of the order:

  1. Billy Bates, Yorkshire and England.
    For England he played 15 times, scoring 656 runs at 27.33 and taking 50 wickets at 16.42. In all first-class cricket he scored 10,249 runs at 21.57 and took 874 wickets at 17.13. Note that his averages were slightly better in test cricket than in first-class cricket. His wickets would have cost more these days, but his batting average would also have been higher. I reckon that by today’s lights he would be a good person to have batting at number eight and bowling his off-breaks. His best test match was at Melbourne in 1883-4 when he scored 55 and then took seven wickets in each innings, including the first test hat-trick by an England bowler, as England secured an iunnings victory. His son W E Bates played for Yorkshire and Glamorgan, and his grandson Ted was involved in various capacities with Southampton FC for over six decades.
  2. George Giffen, South Australia and Australia.
    He played 31 test matches, scoring 1,238 runs at 23.35 and taking 103 wickets at 27.09. In all first class cricket he scored 11,758 runs at 21.54 and took 1022 wickets at 21.31. In the 1894-5 series, the first ever five match series, he scored 475 runs and took 34 wickets, but still finished on the losing side, Andrew Stoddart’s England winning the first, second and fifth matches to take the series 3-2. For South Australia against Victoria in 1891-2 he scored 271 and took 7-70 and 9-96.
  3. Monty Noble, NSW and Australia.
    He played 42 test matches, scoring 1,997 runs at 30.25 and taking 1, she21 wickets at 25.00. In all first class cricket he managed 13,975 runs at 40.74 and took 624 wickets at 23.14.
  4. Vallance Jupp, Sussex, Northamptonshire and England.
    Only eight tests, which yielded 208 runs at 17.33 and 28 wickets at 22.00, but in all first class cricket he scored 23,296 runs at 29.41 and took 1,658 wickets at 23.58. This included doing the double of 1,000 runs and 100 wickets for the season 10 times, eight of them in successive seasons (a level of consistency beaten only by George Hirst, 10 of whose 14 doubles happened in successive seasons and rivalled only by Wilfred Rhodes who twice achieved seven successive doubles).
  5. Deepti Sharma, India Women.
    A current player (indeed she is only a little older than the two youngsters who inspired this section of the post), she has not hat the opportunity to play test cricket but her records in other forms of the game (48 ODIs, 1,380 runs at 41.81 and 56 wickets at 27.39, 30 T20Is, 197 runs at 15.15 and 28 wickets at 22.92) suggest that she would fare well in the longer form, especially looking at that highly impressive ODI batting average (and her HS of 188). 

I hope that Warwickshire will give Banks and Yates opportunities to bowl sooner rather than later (and ditto Somerset with George Bartlett, another young middle order batter who supposedly bowls offspin but has been given little chance to demonstrate it), because if they become genuine bowlers as well as good batters there will be much more scope for variety in the England attack. 

PHOTOGRAPHS

My usual sign off…

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My new outside furniture.

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Yesterday’s Outcomes and Today’s Predictions

An account of the outcome of yesterday’s matches and prediciions on all of those matches from today that were still going at the time of writing.

INTRODUCTION

In this post I cover the outcomes of yesterday’s matches and make halfway predictions on today’s matches.

YESTERDAY’S MATCHES

I made predictions about two games yesterday:

  • Middlesex v SussexSussex 298 (48 overs), Middlesex 176 all out (33-3 overs), Sussex won by 122 runs.
    Luke Wright’s magnificent innings seemed to have taken this game right away from Middlesex, and so it proved. Middlesex’s effort was surprisingly spineless. Eskinazi top scored with 42. Mir Hamza had 3-43, George Garton 2-35, and left-arm spinner Danny Briggs 2-11 from five overs.
  • Kent v PakistanPakistan 358-7 from 50 overs, Kent 258 all out (44.1 overs) Pakistan won by 100 runs.
    Kent fared respectably faced with a huge total from Pakistan but were never in the contest. Alex Blake made 89, but did not have enough support, the next best effort being 49 from Ollie Robinson. Yasir Shah took three wickets but also got smashed for 90 runs in his ten overs. Fakhar Zaman, Faheem Ashraf and Hasan Ali all took two wickets, and the first Ashraf was outstandingly economical as well (just 16 conceded in five overs).

Thus I called both correctly, meaning that my overall record now stands at 23/36…

TODAY’S PREDICTIONS

Unfortunately Leicestershire’s incompetence has denied me the opportunity to make on prediction as that match is already over – I will cover it at the end of this section. Here are the remainder:

  • Worcestershire v WarwickshireWarwickshire 315-5 from 50 overs
    Sam Hain’s 161 was the backbone of a decent total for Warwickshire (offspinning allrounder Liam Banks was second with 44). However, Worcetsershire have made some big totals already this season and I back them to chase this one down. There were no notable bowling efforts from Worcestershire.
  • Nottinghamshire v Yorkshire Yorkshire 213 all out from 42.2 overs
    A poor total for Yorkshire, and I fully expect Nottinghamshire to cruise home with time to spare. 63 for Adam Lyth and 39 from Harry Brook were the best batting efforts. Jake Ball with 3-32 was the most successful bowler.
  • Gloucestershire v Somerset Somerset 242-9 from 50 overs
    Not a huge total for Somerset, but given their bowlers and their record thus far I fully expect them to defend it. Lewis Gregory top scored with 52 (if the Somerset bowlers do what I expect he will be serious candidate for player of the match), and there were forties from Azhar Ali and Tom Abell. Benny Howell with 3-45 and Tom Smith with 2-36 were the pick of the Gloucestershire bowlers.
  • Glamorgan v Surrey Glamorgan 323-7 from 50 overs.
    A big total for Glamorgan, and one that shoukld be enough even for them to be able to defend it. Billy Root, younger brother of England test skipper Joe Root, made 113 not out and Marchant De Lange 58 not out. Morne Morkel took 3-47 for Surrey.
  • Essex v Hampshire Essex 341-6 from 50 overs
    A fine total by Essex, and one that they should defend without too much trouble. The leading Essex scores were 89 a piece from Ravi Bopara and Ryan Ten Doeschate (the latter’s coming off just 53 balls), while Tom Westley hit 48. In amongst Essex’s revenge for their county championship humiliation by Hampshire at the start odf the season bits ‘n’ pieces man Liam Dawson took 2-39 from his 10 overs.
  • Durham v Derbyshire Derbyshire 255-8 from 50 overs
    A so-so effort from Derbyshire, and the fact that Critchley (49 not out) and Lace (48) were the top scorers leads to me to suspect that Durham will chase these down. No one had stand out figures among the Durham bowlers, although Liam Trevaskis was once again the most economical with 1-21 from five overs. 

So my predicitions are Worcestershire, Nottinghamshire, Somerset, Glamorgan, Essex and Durham, which leaves the one I was denied an opportunity to predict:

Lancashire v Leicestershire Leicestershire 80 all out from 37 overs, Lancashire 83-1 from 19 overs, Lancashire won by nine wickets with 186 balls.
A disgraceful show from Leicestershire. Harry Dearden made 20 and Ben Mike 18, and those were the only double figure scores for Leicestershire, while Saqib Mahmood took 5-14 to continue a good season fo him, Liam Hurt, whose profile on cricinfo remains very incomplete, though I can reveal from Lancashire’s own records that he is a 24 year old right arm seamer, took 2-24. Although Jennings contrived to lose his wicket to Dieter Klein, Steven Croft (37 not out) and Haseeb Hameed (29 not out) took Lancashire to a ridiculously easy victory. Leicestershire should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves for this capitulation. 

PHOTOGRAPHS

My usual sign off…

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Yesterday’s Predictions and Today’s Matches at Halfway

How yesterday’s predicitions fared, and predicitions for todays matches (one Royal London Cup match, one tour match). Also a few extras including two very important petitions.

INTRODUCTION

In this post I reveal how yesterday’s predictions fared and look at what is happening in today’s matches. I also have a couple of extras as you will see.

YESTERDAY’S PREDICTIONS

  • Hampshire v GloucestershireHampshire 331-8 from 50 overs, Gloucestershire 246 all out from 46.5overs, Hampshire won by 71 runs on the Duckworth-Lewis method.
    James Vince’s amazing innings looked to have put this one beyound Gloucestershire. A small rain delay reduced Gloucestershire’s innings to 47 overs and their target to 318. No Gloucestershire batter reached 50 (Ryan Higgins, primarily a memiud pacer, top scored with 45), and Hampshire were never anything other than in control, so this was a correct prediction for me. Mason Crane, a legspinner who had a brief but very unsuccessful time as an England player took 3-64, while Kyle Abbott, Brad Wheal and Liam Dawson all picked up two.
  • Northamptonshire v WorcestershireWorcestershire 254-9 from 50 overs, Northamptonshire 234 all out from 48.4 overs, Worcestershire won by 20 runs.
    In restricting their opponents to a modest score Northamptonshire seemed to have done enough, but their own batting misfired badly. Alex Wakely with 46 and Josh Cobb with 44 were the leading scorers, which tells you what the problem was. Wayne Parnell took 3-45, while Brett D’Oliveira was the most economical bowler with 1-28 from 10 overs. I got this one wrong.
  • Nottinghamshire v LeicestershireNottinghamshire 433-7 from 50 overs, Leicestershire 259 from 33.2 overs, Nottinghamshire won by 87 runs on the Duckworth-Lewis method.
    Rain reduced the Leicestershire innings to 37 overs and their target to 347. They made a brave effort, but the target was always beyond them, bearing out my prediction. Harry Dearden made 74 off 70 balls and Mark Cosgrove 59 off 43. Luke Fletcher took 3-53 from eight overs, a notable achievement given the overall run rate on the day.
  • Warwickshire v DurhamWarwickshire 244-8 from 50 overs, Durham 211-3 from 33.4 overs, Durham won by seven wickets with 2.2 overs to spare under the Duckworth-Lewis method.
    Warwickshire’s total looked modest, and the Duckworth-Lewis adjustment to cater for Durham’s reduced allocation of overs did not help them sufficiently to put them back in the game. Alex Lees was 78 not out off 69 balls and Gareth Harte 51 not out of 49 when Durham completed their victory, Greg Clark having scored 66 off 62 at the top of the order. No Warwickshire bowler deserves to have their figures quoted. This was another correct prediction. 
  • Yorkshire v DerbyshireYorkshire 308-2 from 40 overs, Derbyshire 224-3 from 22 overs, tied under the Duckworth-Lewis method.
    Because Yorkshire had a lot of resources left when the rain came (20% of their overs and 80% of their wickets) the requirement for Derbyshire when the game could be resumed was, as it should have been, exceedingly stiff. Spearheaded by opener Billy Godleman running up his third straight List A century Derbyshire made this a pulsating contest, and actually came closer to winning at the end than Yorkshire, although the tie, the second that Yorkshire have been involved in in the competition was a fair result (though disappointing for my predictions, as I had called it in Yorkshire’s favour. Godleman (107 not out off 62 balls) was well backed by Leus Du Plooy (75 off 37 balls) and Matt Critchley (33 not out of 23 at the death). I will not quote any of the Yorkshire bowling figures. 

Thus I called three right and two wrong, making my overall record 21/34. In the day/night game Somerset comfortably beat Essex (353-5 off 39 overs, against Essex 154-6 from 17 overs, a margin of 36 runs on the Duckworth-Lewis method). Peter Trego made 141 of 101 balls, Azhar Ali 110 off 93 and James Hildreth 40 off 18. Peter Siddle took 4-60 off eight overs. In the Essex Innings Dan Lawrence made 51 off 33. Tim Groenewald took 3-34 off three overs, while Craig Overton was notably economical with 1-9 from three overs. In the early stages of the Essex innings there was some blatant time wasting by their batters in the hope that the ten overs necessary for it to constitute a game would not be bowled, but fortunately they were, and thereafter there was little doubt that justice would be done. 

TODAY’S PREDICTIONS

There are two matches taking place in England today, and they are:

  • Middlesex v Sussex, Sussex 298 all out from 48 overs.
    When Sussex were 6-2, and even more when they were 102-5 this looked good for Middlesex, but Luke Wright who had opened thne innings and survived all the early wickets was supported by Ben Brown, captain and wicketkeeper for Sussex in a stand of 174, before both fell in quick succession, Brown for 55 and Wright for an amazing 166 (142 balls, 10 fours, nine sixes). The Sussex tail then did an impression of a house of cards, and Middlesex were spared having a 300plus total on the board against them. However this total should be enough to for Sussex to defend comfortably. Nathan Sowter took 4-48 and Ireland star Tim Murtagh 3-24 each from their full 10 overs,. while their colleagues had a combined 3-226 from 28 overs.
  • Kent v Pakistan (Tour Match) Pakistan 358-7 from 50 overs
    A formidable looking total from Pakistan. Imad Wasim scored 117 not out from 78 balls, Haris Sohail 75 from 71 and Fakhar Zaman 76 from 59. Only Imran Qayyum with 4-45 from his 10 did anything significant with the ball. I fully expect Pakistan to defend this. A point of interest is that Kent have been strengthened by the presence of James Harris of Middlesex in their ranks. 

LINKS AND PICTURES

First a piece from The Guardian titledLabour is right to reverse bus cuts. But it needs to go much furtherwritten by Manchester based campaigner Pascale Robinson.

Next a piece from Vox Political titledBenefit claimants are the modern equivalent of dogs to private landlords, say MPs

A piece from Cambria Jenkins titled “Take Care of Yourselves, Everyone – Especially You, Greta Thunberg“. This piece, written by an autistic person (as Greta Thunberg is as well), contains some good advice for those who struggle to take care of themselves and also some powerful but fair comment on the more neanderthal among Thunberg’s opponents, some of whom have publicly expressed the hope that she has a meltdown in public. For anyone who has experienced a meltdown (see here for an account of one) this is deeply offensive, and it should be outrageous to anyone.

A peition on wemove.eu to save the Ulcinj Dalina nature reserve.
Ulcinj

Also to counteract the one calling for him to be sacked there is now a petition in support of Chris Packham on change.org:

SupportPackham

My usual sign off…

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Yesterdays Results and Predictions for Today

The outcome of yesterday’s predictions, and accounts and predicitions from today’s Royal London Cup matches plus some other features.

INTRODUCTION

Today we beign with a look back at such actions as there was in yesterdays two Royal London Cup matches, and then around the grounds at today’s matches, most of which are now at the half-way stage.

YESTERDAY’S MATCHES

Just the two games:

  • Middlesex v SurreyMiddlesex 277 all out from 50 overs, Surrey 240 all out from 48 overs, Middlesex won by 37 runs.
    Surrey were always behind the rate in this one, although they retained hope until Ben Foakes (71, the highest individual score of the game) was out. For Middlesex Tom Helm and Nathan Sowter each took four wickets. I had called this one for Surrey.
  • Glamorgan v Kent Glamorgan 68-2 from 15 overs, no result, rain
    The rain never did ease in this one, so ended as a no result. Kent would have been heavy favourites had the rain eased off enough to allow them a 10 over run chase of what would presumably have been around about 75-80. As it is, although my comments on this one allowed for the possibility of the weather triumphing I can hardly count it as a successful prediction, since I really called it in Kent’s favour.

Thus, for the first time in six match days I was wrong on more predictions than I was right on – 0/2 to be precise. However, my record remains 18/29.

TODAY’S PREDICTIONS

A number of matches to call…

  • Hampshire v GloucestershireHampshire 331-8 from 50 overs
    At 65-4 this was looking poor for Hampshire, but James Vince and Liam Dawson rescued the home team with a stand 186, before Dawson was out for 73. Vince went on to a Hampshire List A record individual score of 190, being out with one ball remaining in the innings. Chris Liddle with 4-66 was the star of the Gloucestershire bowlers. Thanks to Vince’s innings I think Hampshire will win this one. The commentary team featured Emily Windsor, a 21 year old batter for Hampshire Women.
  • Northamptonshire v WorcestershireWorcestershire 254-9 from 50 overs.
    A modest total by today’s standards for Worcestershire. Hamish Rutherford made 126, but no one else reached 30. For Northants Cobb, Sanderson Keogh  and Buck all took two wickets, while Muzarabani was economical in his opening spell (1-13 from five overs). I expect Northants to knock these off with some comfort.
  • Nottinghamshire v Leicestershire Nottinghamshire 433-7 from 50 overs
    A huge total for Nottinghamshire. All of the top six in their order reached fifty, the scores being as follows: Chris Nash 56 off 53, Joe Clarke 55 off 44, Ben Duckett 86 off 61, Jake Libby 66 off 52, Tom Moores 50 off 32 and Steven Mullaney 81 off 41. Gavin Griffiths took 3-92 from nine overs and I will spare the blushes of the remaining Leicestershire bowlers.
  • Warwickshire v DurhamWarwickshire 248-8 from 50 overs
    62 from Tim Ambrose and 50 a piece from Sam Hain and Chris Woakes saved Warwickshire from complete disaster, but this is a modest score (only one lower total was defended in this competition last season, and only one so far this season). For Durham Ben Carse had 3-46, Matty Potts 2-46 and the two most economical bowlers, Liam Trevaskis and Ben Raine, each with 1-29 from seven overs did not get to bowl their full allocation! Nevertheless, I expect Durham to win this one with something to spare.
  • Yorkshire v DerbyshireYorkshire 308-2 in 40 overs, rain has intervened.
    Huge scoring from Yorkshire, and with only two wickets lost they were heavy favourites for a 400plus score when the rain came. This will be reflected in the adjusted total that Derbyshire have to chase – the scoring rate required will certainly by a minimum of 8.25 an over, perhaps 8.50 or even 9.00 depending on how many overs are left for the Derbyshire innings (the D/L bases these things on resources, which include wickets and overs remaining, and with 20% of their overs and 80% of their wickets remaining Yorkshire had plenty of resources to have a real dart in the closing stages of their innings). Therefore, assuming that the rain eases sufficiently for a match to be completed I expect Yorkshire to win comfortably. All four Yorkshire players who batted had 50s: Tom Kohler-Cadmore 79 off 92, Adam Lyth 78 off 60, David Willey 72 not out off 49 and Harry Brook 59 not out off 40. The Derbyshire biolwing figures are best not talked about.

The other game, between Essex and Somerset at Colchester was scheduled to start at 1:00PM but delayed by rain until 3PM and is already reduced to 39 overs per side. It is too early to attempt to call this one, though Somerset have made a decent start.

LINKS AND PICTURES

Emboldened by the fact that a petition calling for him to be sacked had garnered 40,000 signatures Farmer’s Weekly put up a poll asking whether people thought the BBC should sack Chris Packham. At the moment 71% of the 78208 people who have voted are in the “no” camp along with me (this means that 55,579 voters do not think he should be sacked, comfortably exceeding the number of signatories to the petition). Click here to view the article and vote if it is still open.

From brilliant.org I offer you a little teaser:

orange

Three twitter finds to lead up to my regular sign off:

Now for my regular sign off…

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How Yesterday’s Predictions Fared and Predictions For Today

How yesterday’s predictions fared, some predicitons for today’s Royal London Cup action and a couple of other features.

INTRODUCTION

Yesterday due to timing issues I posted predictions about the outcomes of that days Royal London Cup matches before they took place. This post shows how those predictions panned out and provides predictions for today’s two matches, with one at the half-way stage and the other heavily weather affected. There are also a few other things included.

HOW YESTERDAY’S PREDICTIONS FARED

Here match by match is what happened yesterday:

  • Somerset v SussexSomerset 282-8 from 50 overs, Sussex 62-4 from 16.3 overs, Somerset win by 69 runs on the Duckworth-Lewis method
    The Duckworth-Lewis method, now administered by a man named Stern, its two progenitors having retired, is the best method for resolving rain spoiled fixtures yet devised – a predecessor led to England and South Africa retaking the field when the calculation reduced South Africa’s task to 22 off one ball! There is no doubt that having lost four early wickets Sussex were heading for defeat even had the rain not intervened. Coimpetition rules require each side to have batted for at least 10 overs for the game to be considered completed. For Somerset Hildreth scored 81, Azhar Ali had his first decent performance as overseas player with 68 and Lewis Gregory hit 50 off 28 balls near the end. Mir Hamza took three wickets for Sussex and Chris Jordan two. Sussex had lost the top four in their order when the rain came, with the wickets going to Overton, Davey, Groenewald and Gregory. A correct prediction for me.
  • Leicestershire v DerbyshireLeicestershire 312-8 (50 overs), Derbyshire 266-3 off 39 overs, Derbyshire won by seven wickets off the last possible ball.
    Again a bit of rain meant that the Duckowrth-Lewis formula came into play. In the end Derbyshire needed eight of the final over and nearly made a pig’s ear of it. Ackerman made 119 for Leicestershire, while the wickets were widely shared. Billy Godleman made 106 for Derbyshire, guiding them almost to victory, Du Plooy was 73 not out and Madsen made 60. This was an incorrect prediction.
  • Lancashire v Northamptonshire Northamptonshire 269 all out from 50 overs, Lanashire 164-2 from 28.4 overs, Lancashire won by eight wickets under the Duckworth/Lewis method.
    Lancashire were motoring ahead of the required rate when the rain intervened, and quite rightly the calculation showed as much, earning them the win and me a second correct prediction out of three. Jason Holder made 72 for Northamptonshire, Rob Keogh 66 and Vasconcelos 50, while all else in this innings was overshadowed by the bowling of Saqib Mohamed who took 6-37. For Lancashire Haseeb Hameed made 65 and Keaton Jennings 63.
  • Worcestershire v DurhamDurham 114-4 from 27.2 overs, Worcestershire 152-6 from 22.2 overs, Worcestershire won four wickets with 10 balls to spare under the Duckworth-Lewis Method.
    The fact that Worcestershire knew from the start that their innings would be truncated and Durham did not explains why they were required to chase more than Durham had scored, and the fact that Durham had lost four wickets explains why the differential was not even greater. Alex Lees made 52 not out for Durham, while no Worcestershire bowler took more than one wicket. Four Worcestershire players scored over 25, although the top score was a mere 33 by Hamish Rutherford. For Durham Carse, Salisbury and Raine each took two wickets. I called this one correctly.

Thus I was right with three predictions and wrong with one, making a fifth Royal London Cup match day out of five on which I have got more right than wrong, and taking my overall record to 19 right out of 27, a strike rate of 70.03% (70.027…%, rounds up to 70.03).

TODAY’S PREDICTIONS

There are only two matches taking place:

  • Middlesex v SurreyMiddlesex 277 all out from 50 overs
    The last two wickets boosted the Middlesex total, with Toby Roland-Jones finishing with 45, second top score to Ross Taylor’s 64. The bowling star was veteran off-spinner Gareth Batty with 4-29. Middlesex’s total is respectable but I am predicting that Surrey will chase them down.
  • Glamorgan v Kent Glamorgan 68-2 from 15 overs, raining at present.
    If the rain relents sufficiently to allow a result this match will go a long way to settling who gets the wooden spoon from the South Group, as both these teams currently have 100% losing records. Looking at Glamorgan’s current score my reckoning is that Kent are currently second favourites to the weather to emerge with the spoils. Wicketkeeper Chris Cooke is 29 not out and Labuschagne made 27, while Klaasen and Podmore each have a wicket.

A SCOPE EVENT

Scope had a get together at the West Norfolk Deaf Centre on Railway Road, and I was one of three members of the NAS West Norfolk Committee in attendance. It was a thoroughly enjoyable session, and we raised the issue of Scope helping us to get music sessions running again. With the help of Scope it will be a possibility. We also took part in some of the activities that were made available for us on the day. I have a few photographs to share…

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Three pictures from around the room.

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Emma Palmer’s work

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I did not find out who had created this, but it is good quality.

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A ‘Sudbury Town’ type building with a wind turbine to meet ir’s power needs.

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ANNUAL HEALTH CHECKS FOR AUTISTIC PEOPLE

This is an idea being pushed by NAS at a national level. As someone who is autistic and who has had a very difficult time recently due a health issue not being picked up until far too late I want to be involved with this, and to turn my experience to good use. There is information in earlier blog posts that NAS are welcome to use, and I am considering further options for working with NAS on this.

PHOTOGRAPHS

My usual sign off…

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Clean Sweep of Predictions Yesterday and Predictions For Today

The outcome of yesterday’s predcitions (100% success!) and some predictions for today because I will be out at my usual time for making them.

INTRODUCTION

Because of the fact that I am seeing my team at Addenbrookes later today and will not be back until well into the second innings of today’s Royal London Cup fixtures this is a combined feedback and predictions post – I chose the bold option of predicting based solely on form in the competition so far rather than the cautious one of not predicting at all.

YESTERDAY’S PREDICTIONS – A TALE OF SUCCESS

Surrey v EssexSurrey 278-8 from 50 overs, Essex 213 all out from 42.5 overs, Surrey won by 65 runs
When Dan Lawrence and Ravi Bopara were enjoying a good stand it looked like Essex may chase these down, but they fell in very quick succession, followed also by wicketkeeper Robbie White. Ryan Ten Doeschate, a fine player, but with his 39th birthday approaching now no longer quite the force he was did his best to rally the lower order, but it was not enough. Morne Morkel took 4-23 for Surrey and Liam Plunkett 4-50. Will Jacks was not able to emulate Lawrence by bowling his full allocation – he finished with 1-39 from six overs.

Hampshire v Middlesex Hampshire 301-9 from 50 overs, Middlesex 182 all out from 35.4 overs, Hampshire won by 119 runs.
Hampshire had a big finish to their innings, which induced me to call this one in their favour. However, I was not expecting quite such a pathetic batting effort from Middlesex. No Middlesex batter made a significant contribution, with 41 from Eoin Morgan their top score. South African Aidan Markram followed his fine batting with 3-39, and renegade South African Kyle Abbott spearheaded the bowling with 3-36.

Gloucestershire v Kent Kent 282-8 from 50 overs, Gloucestershire 283-4 from 46.5 overs, Gloucestershire won by six wickets with 3.1 overs to spare.
I did not think that Kent had the bowling to defend a so-so total and I was proven right. Gloucestershire wicketkeeper Gareth Roderick led the way and deservedly completed a century at the moment of victory, finishing 100 not out. James Bracey made 67. None of the Kent bowlers produced figures that merit quoting here.

Warwickshire v Nottinghamshire Nottinghamshire 301-9 from 50 overs, Warwickshire 183 all out from 37.5 overs. Nottinghamshire won by 118 runs.
Another very one-sided match, with Warwickshire failing miserably to respond to Nottinghamshire’s fine batting effort. Among the wreckage 19 year-old Liam Banks scored 57 and Alex Thomson managed 55, but they only delayed the inevitable, though Banks at least is a hope for the future. Opening bowlers Luke Fletcher and Matthew Carter (a 22 year old off-spinner – Notts did something different with the new ball) each took three wickets, and James Pattinson and Samit Patel weighed in with two each.

Four correct predicitions out of four, putting on me on 16 correct out of 23 overall – a strike rate at the moment of 69.57% (69.565 to three dp, and that third decimal being a five or higher it gets rounded up when giving the figure to two dp).

PREDICTIONS FOR TODAY

Sussex v Somerset – I reckon that Somerset will draw strength from having hung on against Glamorgan when the Welsh county nearly snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. Their bowling looks especially impressive, and I back them to win this one, though Sussex will probably push them close.

Leicestershire v Derbyshire – Leicestershire have been good so far, Derbyshire not so good, and Leicestershire have home advantage. Thus I call this one as win for Leicestershire, and expect them to have something to spare over their opponents.

Lancashire v Northamptonshire  – Both teams have fared reasonably well so far. Lancashire have home advantage, and have the additional boost of their dramatic roses match triumph. Thus I call this one in Lancashire’s favour.

Worcestershire v Durham – With home advantage I expect Worcestershire to win this one (especially if they manage to find a way of dismissing Bancroft) although they were well beaten last time out.

PHOTOGRAPHS

My regular sign off…

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The only publicity I have received about the upcoming local elections (two images) – given the paucity of choice I was going to vote for these candidates anyway.

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A house sparrow.

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A muntjac yesterday evening.

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even feral creatures use recognized modes of egress!

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How My Latest Predictions Fared

Accounts of the final outcomes of yesterday’s Royal London Cup matches, including details of how my latest set of predictions worked out. Also features a couple of twitter finds and some of my photographs.

INTRODUCTION

At the halfway stage of yesterday’s Royal London Cup fixtures, in accordance with what is now my custom I ventured a set of predictions as to the outcomes. Now I reveal how they fared.

THE OUTCOMES MATCH BY MATCH

Northamptonshire v WarwickshireNorthamptonshire 358-6, Warwickshire 164, Northamptonshire won by 194 runs.
I called this as a Northamptonshire win and was proven correct. The sheer size of the win was a bit of a surprise. Ed Pollock and Alex Thomson joint top-scored for Warwickshire with 36 a piece, while Blessing Muzurabani, Ben Sanderson and Jason Holder each picked uo three wickets for Northamptonshire.

Glamorgan v SomersetSomerset 261-9, Glamorgan 259, Somerset won by 2 runs.
For the second time in a row Craig Overton followed useful late runs (crucial in this case) with early wickets. When Glamorgan were 41-6 it seemed to be all over, but then David Lloyd (84) and Graham Wagg (62) put on 152 to drag their side back into it. At 202-9 Somerset again looked like winners, but then Glamorgan rallied through their last pair, Lucas Carey and Dutchman Timm Van Der Gugten, who looked to have snatched the game for their side until Carey holed out for 39 to end things with Glamorgan two runs adrift. I had called this as a Somerset win, and I was just proven right. It was an absolute classic match, and credit to Glamorgan for their incredible fight back from 41-6, from where a margin of 200 looked likelier than the eventual two! Scottish medium pacer Josh Davey had a List A best 4-36, Overton (surely player of the match) had 3-51 to go with his priceless 41 not out and Dutchman Roelof Van Der Merwe had 2-36 from 5.1 overs, snaring the final wicket.

Kent v Sussex Kent 298, Sussex 302-3 (40 overs) – Sussex won by seven wickets with 10 overs to spare.
I got this one wrong – I had called it as a Kent win. The match was won for Sussex by two men, north Wales born Philip Salt (137 not out off 106 balls, he now has 422 list A runs at 42.20 and a strike rate of 108.20 in that form of the game – clearly one to watch for the future, as he is only just 22) and Hastings born Harry Finch (89 off 68 balls, he now has 1,056 list A runs at 42.24 and a strike rate of 78.57 in that form, and is 24 years old). For Kent Matt Milnes took two wickets but also got carted – 73 off nine overs, while wily old Darren Stevens had 1-34 from eight overs.

Leciestershire v Worcestershire Leicestershire 377-4 from 50 overs, Worcestershire 339 from 46.2 overs, Leicestershire won by 38 runs.
Worcetsreshire fought gamely in the face of a huge total but never managed at any stage to get on terms with the task. 131 from Ross Whiteley was the main contribution, and he was supported by Brett D’Oliveira (grandson of Basil, son of Damian, 57) and Ed Barnard (61). Dieter Klein took 4-72 and Claude Ackerman 3-55 to follow his mighty innings. A correct prediction from me.

Gloucestershire v Middlesex Gloucestershire 283-7, Middlesex 287-4 from 42.2 overs, Middlesex won by six wickets with 7.4 overs to spare.
I called this one incorrectly, backing Gloucestershire to defend. When the Middlesex score was 103-4 this one was looking fairly good for me, but Steve Eskinazi (107 not out) and Nick Gubbins (98 not out) saw their side to what was in the end a very comfortable victory. Australian seamer Daniel Worrall took 2-30 from six overs, but no one else did anything of significance with the ball.  

Yorkshire v LancashireLancashire 311-6, Yorkshire 310 all out (50 overs exactly) Lancashire won by one run.
Having had a tie in their last game, Yorkshire lost this one by a single run, suffering two run outs at the end to settle it. Tom Kohler-Cadmore scored 97 off 113 balls, Gary Ballance 72 off 64, and Johnny Tattersall 49 off 29 to bring his side very close to the line before being run out. Saqib Mahmood took 3-76 and bowled the crucial final over, legspinner Matt Parkinson took 2-47 from his 10 (a key performance in so close and high scoring a match) and there was a wicket a piece for Graham Onions, Glen Maxwell and Liam Hurt (so new on the scene that his profile is very sketchy – his date of birth is not recorded, not what hand he bats with, nor what style of bowler he is, and given that he too was economical for such a high scooring game – 42 runs off eight overs, this could be the first sighting of future star). I had called this one as Yorkshire win, and a single run saved my bacon and extended my record of calling more correctly than wrongly to a third round of this competition.

Derbyshire v NottinghamshireDerbyshire 297-8, Nottinghamshire 299-4 (45.1 overs) Nottinghamshire won by six wickets with 4.5 overs to spare.
I had expected Derbyshire to defend their 297-8, but in the end Nottinghamshire were comfortable winners. Ben Slater made 83 off 100 balls, and then from 173-4 Tom Moores hit 52 not out off 46 balls and skipper Steven Mullaney 68 not out off 47 balls to carry Nottinghamshire to victory. Alfie Gleadall, whose date of birth like that of Liam Hurt is shown as ‘unknown’, but who I can reveal to be left handed batter and right-arm medium fast bowler took 3-43 from seven overs, and no other Derbyshire bowler deserves to have their figures quoted.

Thus I was right with four of my predictions and wrong with three, making my overall tally thus far 12 right and seven wrong, a success rate of 63.16% (63.15789 to five decimal places, they key being that the third decimal is a 7, i..e 5 or greater, so we round up), and I have had more right than wrong on all three occasions I have done this so far, though this time  that was only just the case.

LINKS AND PICTURES

We start with a basic primer on climate science from Parents for Future SE:
CSB

My second offering comes from Election Maps UK and shows what our House of Commons would look like under PR:

PRH

I have two elections coming up, a local council election in which the four candidates are two Labour and two Tory, meaning that I will vote Labour. I do not yet know who all the candidates in the European election on May 22 are, but if there is a Green to vote for in that I will vote for them. In a general election under our current deeply flawed system, given the nature of my constituency I would have to vote Labour, as only Labour have anything approaching the support base needed to unseat the sitting Tory MP – whereas under PR I would be voting Green.

Now we have my regular sign off…

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How My Second Set of Predictions Fared

A look at the conclusions of yesterday’s Royal London Cup matches and an analysis of my predictions at the half way stages.

INTRODUCTION

Yesterday, when all the day fixtures in the Royal London Cup had reached their half-way stage I covered what was happening and made predictions for each result. Today I complete the story be revealing the results and mentioning noteworthy efforts from the second half of each game. 

YESTERDAY’S ROYAL LONDON CUP MATCHES

This is how it all unfolded:

  • Derbyshire v NorthamptonshireDerbyshire 268-6, Northamptonshire 215 (43.5 overs), Derbyshire won by 53 runs
    I backed Derbyshire to win this one because of the fightback they had made in the latter stages of their innings. This one was more one sided even than the margin suggests. At one point Northants were 112-8 before a lower order fightback gave them a hint of respectability. There were four wickets for young medium pacer Alex Hughes, three for Van Beek and two for Rampaul. Luke Procter scored an unbeaten 50, but no other Northants batter merits a mention.
  • Warwickshire v YorkshireWarwickshire 270-8 Yorkshire 270-9 TIED!!
    I got this one wrong, expecting Yorkshire to chase them down. At 112-6 it looked a certain win for Warwickshire, but Jonny Tattersall (79) and Tim Bresnan (89) staged a revival that very nearly won it for Yorkshire. England all-rounder Chris Woakes took 3-47 and the hugely promising teenager Henry Brookes took 3-50. Kiwi veteran Jeetan Patel was the most economical with 2-41.
  • Durham vLeicestershire  – Leicestershire 233-9, Durham 234-4 (45.3 overs) Durham won by six wickets
    This was an easy call after that poor Leicestershire innings, and an easy win for Durham in the end. Cameron Bancroft scored 118 not out, and received support from various of the Durham order. Dieter Klein and Gavin Griffiths each had a couple of wickets.
  • Hampshire v GlamorganGlamorgan 292-9 Hampshire 293-3 (41.5overs) Hampshire won by seven wickets.
    I had this down as a Glamorgan win. In the event Hampshire made it look very easy indeed, and Glamorgan’s future in this competition, even after just two matches looks bleak – they failed horrendously to chase in their first game and failed just as epically to defend in this one. Tom Alsop, a 23 year-old wicketkeeper batter opened the Hampshire innings and was 130 not out off 115 baals when they completed the win. Former England man James Vince scored 95 off 78 balls to put Hampshire in complete control of the chase. I will draw a veil over the Glamorgan bowling figures.
  • Nottinghamshire v Lancashire Nottinghamshire 417-7, Lancashire 406-9 Nottinghamshire won by 11 runs
    I called this one correctly. Lancashire made a tremendous effort, and until the dismissal of their captain Dane Vilas (166 off 100 balls) an extraordinary victory appeared to be on the cards. In the end that Nottinghamshire total was just enough. Steven Croft scored 110 off 82 balls. James Pattinson with 5-61 off his 10 overs was the star of the bowlers – if he had gone at the same rate as his colleagues Lancashire would have got home with time to spare (approximately an over and a half if you care to do the calculation).
  • Somerset v Kent Somerset 358-9, Kent 94 (27 overs) – Somerset won by 264 runs
    With that total on the board I called this one in Somerset’s favour, but even I was surprised by the margin of victory. AfterS had piled up their huge total Kent needed a good start to stay in the contest. Unfortunately for them they got the reverse, as Craig Overton followed his 66 by taking three early wickets (he would add two more before the end, finishing with 5-18) and Kent were reeling at 25-4. Thereafter Kent tried to salvage a hint of respectability and failed. The margin was a record for one first class county over another in limited overs cricket (various previous limited overs competitions featured minor county sides, so the distinction is needed). A detailed analysis of this match can be found here
  • Essex v Middlesex Middlessex 366-8, Essex 328 (49.2 overs) Middlesex won by 38 runs
    Again a big enough total to predict the final outcome with some confidence, but Essex put up a fine fight. Varun Chopra made 127 off 127 balls and Tom Westley 77 off 59 balls. For Middlesex Nathan Sowter, a 26 year-old legspinner with little previous experience of top level cricket took 6-62 from 9.2 overs

I called five of these matches correctly and two wrongly, making my overall record of predictions in this competition now eight right and four wrong. As with the first round there was a “day/night” match which was not far enough advanced for me to make a prediction on at the time:

Surrey v Sussex Surrey 274-9, Sussex 278-8 (48.1 overs)
This was a humdinger of a match. Surrey’s problem in their innings was that no-one went to a really big score – Foakes led the way with 64 and Will Jacks managed 56, while Mir Hamza rook 4-43. Tom Curran (3-37 from 10) and Gareth Batty (2-39 from 10) bowled excellently for Surrey, Morne Morkel and Rikki Clarke were respectable, but the fifth set of 10 overs let Surrey down, as Plunkett (6 overs, 1-57) and Jacks (4 overs for 26) both bowled very poorly. Sussex’s matchwinner was David Wiese (92 not out), while Luke Wright scored 69.

The first set of fixtures provided a lot of very one-sided games, but no one could complain about the fare on offer this time round – fine cricket featured in most if not all of the matches and several were very close, including the incredible tie between Yorkshire and Warwickshire.

PHOTOGRAPHS

My usual sign off…

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The Royal London Cup Round 2 Fixtures

A look at what is happening in the Royal London Cup, complete with predictions. Also some of my photopgraphs.

INTRODUCTION

The seven daytime Royal London Cup Fixtures taking place today have all reached the halfway stage, and as in this post, where I was 3/5 on predictions I will be essaying predictions as to the outcomes of these fixtures, as well as drawing attention to noteworthy efforts within the matches. Wihtou further ado…

THE ROYAL LONDON CUP 19/4

  • Derbyshire v NorthamptonshireDerbyshire 268-6 from 50 overs
    This total represents a fightback by Derbyshire, as at one stage they were 137-5. This and the fact that the sides batting first all won their games last time out influences me to call this one in Derbyshir’s favour. Billy Godleman played the anchor role for Derbyshire with 87 off 124 balls, while Matt Critchley scored 64 not out off 51 balls, having come in at 137-5. Blessing Muzurabani picked up 2-54 and Jason Holder 2-62. 
  • Warwickshire v YorkshireWarwickshire 270-8 from 50 overs
    Various Warwickshire players got starts, but only Tim Ambrose (77 off 108 balls) made a really significant score. Matthew Pillans added another three wickets to the five he took in the opening game, while Bresnan and Poysden took two each. I would expect Yorkshire to make it two wins out of two – all it will take is two of their top order play significant innings.
  • Durham v Leicestershire Leciestershire 233-9 from 50 overs
    Leicestershire were 112-7 at the low water mark of their innings, so this score represents a fight back. However, although it runs contrary to my hopes given their awful choice of captain I expect Durham to win this fairly easily and make it two wins from two. Tom Taylor made 59 off 63 balls and Dieter Klein, also mainly a bowler, scored 46 off 71 balls in the latter stages. Brydon Carse took 3-58, while Liam Trevaskis had 2-37 from his full 10 overs.
  • Hampshire v GlamorganGlamorgan 292-9 overs
    This is a tough one to call – Glamorgan’s total looks quite good, but none of their batters got more than 68 (achieved by David Lloyd off 62 balls and Graham Wagg off 57 balls). Kyle Abbott took 3-47 and Liam Dawson 2-57. Bearing in mind the successes of sides batting first so far this season I am going to predict a win for Glamorgan. 
  • Notinghamshire v Lancashire Nottinghamshire 417-7 from 50 overs
    A monster score by Nottinghamshire. Cricket is a glorious game precisely because it is wonderfully unpredictable, but it will the story of the day if Lancashire chase these down. My prediction is therefore a Nottinghamshire victory. Joe Clarke made 139 off 99 balls at the top off the order, Ben Slater hit 74 off 82, Tom Moores 74 off 39 and Luke Fletcher 46 not out off 17 at the end. Graham Onions managed 2–70 from his 10, quite an achievement in such a huge score, and Saqib Mahmood, a young medium pacer, collected 2-88 from his 10.
  • Somerset v Kent Somerset 358-9 from 50 overs
    A big total for Somerset, and one that I confidently expect them to defend. Tom Banton, a 20 year old keeper-batter scored 107 off 79 balls at the top of the Somerset order, Lewis Gregory contributed 51 from 45, and Craig Overton scored 66 not out off 36 at the death. Stevens, Podmore, Klassen and Milnes each took two wickets, the veteran Stevens managing to go for only 50 from his ten overs.
  • Essex v MiddlesexMiddlesex 366-8 from 50 overs
    A great effort by Middlesex. Dawid Malan led off with 95 from 102 balls, and Nick Gubbins with 56 off 57 kept things going when Middlesex might have got into trouble, before George Scott, a 23 year old right hander, scored 63 off just 28 balls to give the total a late boost. Peter Siddle took 3-71 and Dan Lawrence’s leg spin brought him 2-63 – his batting will be needed later if Essex are to get anywhere near chasing this total down. I expect Middlesex to win this one, especially given that teams batting first have done so well so far this season.

Thus my calls in these games are: Derbyshire, Yorskhire, Durham, Glamorgan, Nottinghamshire, Somersert and Middlesex. The Surrey v Sussex match is at too early a stage for a prediction as it is a day/night game. Surrey are 206-4 in the 40th over. Will Jacks made 56 for Surrey, Foakes has 41 not out and Pope, just starting to hit the launchpad, is 32 not out. None the Sussex bowlers have really noteworthy figures. If Foakes and Pope keep going and propel Surrey to something in the vicinity of 300 they will be favourites, while if Sussex keep Surrey below about 270 they will have a good chance. Update – Pope has just gone for 33, making 209-5, swinging things back towards Sussex. Rikki Clarke has joined Foakes. 

PHOTOGRAPHS

My usual sign off…

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