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Category: Yorkshire

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County cricket talking points: Ross Whiteley hits six sixes … and loses

Ross Whiteley scored 37 in one over for Worcestershire but David Willey’s 118 helped Yorkshire win the match and climb to the top of their T20 Blast group

By Gary Naylor for the 99.94 Cricket Blog, part of the Guardian Sport Network

Kevin Pietersen’s Surrey (see what I did there) top the South Group after a couple of strange matches at The Oval. On Wednesday, a raucous (but not too raucous) capacity crowd saw him almost single-handedly get Surrey up to 150, a score that proved good enough on a slow pitch exploited with Yorkshire nous by Gareth Batty, whose four overs brought him 2-19. But back to Pietersen, as always seems to be the case. Having been badly dropped at cow corner by Dan Lawrence and “running” like a stiff Alastair Cook, he appeared to decide to hit sixes and five of the match’s eight flew off his bat. In more ways than one, he played like a right-handed version of Chris Gayle – whether that is a good look these days remains to be seen. It worked in this match, no other batsman crossing 30, as Essex fell 11 short of their target.

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County Championship roundup: George Bailey helps Hampshire take revenge

• Hants post fifth highest score of 648-7 declared; Surrey 113-1
• Stevie Eskinazi hits 178no in Middlesex’s 302-6 v Warwickshire

Hampshire have not forgotten about the two days last July when, at a sweltering Ageas Bowl, Surrey posted 637 for seven declared to set up a dramatic win. It was, for Hampshire’s attack, filthy toil and, as one Surrey player admitted, they had continued batting after tea on the second day “just to piss them off”.

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County cricket: Jimmy Adams in awe of James Vince as they gang up on Surrey

• Vince catches the eye while Hampshire duo both make centuries
• Somerset fight back against Yorkshire after captain drops himself

“He’s nice to bat with but you can stand at the other end and feel a little inadequate,” said one Hampshire centurion, Jimmy Adams, of another, James Vince, at the end of a day dominated by the pair. They had put on 161, bullying Surrey after they had worked hard to dismiss Lewis McManus, bowled by a snorting, swinging Sam Curran yorker, and Rilee Rossouw, caught at second slip off Curran’s brother, Tom.

Related: County cricket: James Vince pushes England case with Hampshire century

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Simon Harmer grabs nine wickets for Essex and they do for Middlesex

• Compton hits first century since August but to no avail
• Derbyshire end tortuous two-year wait for a victory

These are heady days for Essex cricket. After defeating Middlesex by an innings and 34 runs, despite losing a day to rain, they sit proudly top of the County Championship by 28 points, after seven years out of the top flight. They have won three in succession and, whisper it, in turning over the title winners so emphatically, have the look of champions themselves.

Related: County cricket: Essex thrash Middlesex to go 29 points clear – as it happened!

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County Championship roundup: Ballance struggles to hold Yorkshire together

• Samit Patel and James Pattinson puts Notts on top at Trent Bridge
• Ravi Bopara makes first Championship ton since 2014 for Essex

Gary Ballance made runs, of course he did, but his was a lone hand, and Yorkshire are in deep trouble at Lord’s, where they have lost their last three games in remarkable fashion. Closing nine down and 260 behind, a remarkable effort is required to avoid a fourth loss.

Throughout Middlesex’s first innings of 446, the nagging sense was that a little more lay in the track than the total suggested. Adil Rashid had taken two wickets, including the last, Steven Finn, with balls that stayed low, and scoring had only been totally simple under the baking sun on Monday afternoon, with the centurions, Sam Robson and Paul Stirling, flying along. From the moment Robson fell caught behind to Ben Coad for 159, their batting on the second morning lacked fluency, in the face of improved Yorkshire bowling.

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Sam Robson jogs a few memories as Middlesex make merry against Yorkshire

• Middlesex 337-4 v Yorkshire
• Hampshire frustrate Lancashire, Essex go slow against Warks

The first five games of Middlesex’s title defence have not exactly gone to plan. Some of their cricket has been passive, and injuries and call-ups have been disruptive, not least for this game, with the batting backbone of Nick Gubbins, Dawid Malan and Adam Voges all absent. The impressive unbeaten run is gone, too, and they are winless.

But they like playing Yorkshire – who have lost their past three at Lord’s, and their last three against Middlesex, all in remarkable fashion – and through centuries from Sam Robson (152 not out) and Paul Stirling (111), the latter’s long overdue first in Championship cricket, they have carved a strong position on a pitch that appears green but largely played true (save for a couple that stayed low) under a beating sun. As they tend to when Stirling is in town, runs flowed freely throughout.

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Yorkshire cruise to win over Lancashire to close in on leaders Essex

• Lancashire 123 & 209, Yorkshire 273 & 61-0
• Yorkshire won by 10 wickets

Yorkshire’s Roses victory came with the minimum of fuss. On the final day, they clinically swept away Lancashire’s last six wickets for 68, then knocked off the required 60 for a 10-wicket win. “From start to finish we dominated,” was the succinct and entirely accurate assessment of Andrew Gale, their coach. Whisper it, but this performance, which takes Yorkshire within two points of the leaders, Essex, was reminiscent of those seen in the twin titles under Gale’s captaincy.

Related: County cricket: Yorkshire beat Lancashire, plus Middlesex v Somerset – live!

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Adam Lyth grinds out century to edge Yorkshire towards Roses dominance

• Lancashire 123 & 141-4; Yorkshire 273
• Opening batsman hits 100 off 234 balls before Lancashire lose cheap wickets

The value of Adam Lyth’s century, surely the hardest-fought of his 22 in first-class cricket, was seen in its celebration; having spent 41 balls across 16 overs and 71 minutes hanging in the 90s, he involuntarily leaped into the air while completing a single. Drained by his 234-ball stay, the next ball he faced produced his first truly loose shot and he was caught behind driving.

But Lyth, whose next highest score this season is 30, had chiselled Yorkshire towards Roses dominance: a first innings lead of 150, which their potent seam attack then capitalised on, dismissing Lancashire’s top four cheaply.

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County cricket: Yorkshire v Lancashire, Middlesex v Somerset and more – live!

1.01pm BST

No play at Headingley or Durham (both 1.10 starts) and off for rain at Derby. But here are your scores.

Division One:

12.57pm BST

I said restart at that last post, which suggests we are starting again. We are not. We are starting for the first time. Apologies.

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County cricket: Lancashire v Yorkshire, Middlesex v Surrey – live!

11.50am BST

Mason Crane took the catch!

11.49am BST

Wicket! At Chelmsford. Fidel Edwards gets Browne. Caught at midwicket, which sounds a bit careless. They’re not even an over in!

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County cricket: Lancashire v Yorkshire, Middlesex v Surrey – live!

11.50am BST

Mason Crane took the catch!

11.49am BST

Wicket! At Chelmsford. Fidel Edwards gets Browne. Caught at midwicket, which sounds a bit careless. They’re not even an over in!

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Essex beat Somerset to close in on Royal London One-Day Cup semi-final spot

• Tom Westley was the mainstay of victory, making 100 from 98 balls
• Gloucestershire dented Sussex’s hopes of reaching knockout stages

Essex moved close to a home semi-final in the Royal London One-Day Cup with a 72-run win over the previous South Group leaders, Somerset.

Tom Westley was the mainstay of Essex’s 50-over total of 334 for six at Taunton, making exactly 100 from 98 balls. Ravi Bopara (92 not out) and Alastair Cook (65) also shone with the bat and Somerset fell well short, despite Johann Myburgh hitting 57 out of a 64-run opening stand with Jim Allenby.

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County cricket talking points: early form suggests we are in for a cracking season

Five of the eight teams in Division One have won one of their three matches so far. With teams taking points off each other, we may see another final-day thriller

By Gary Naylor for the 99.94 Cricket Blog, part of the Guardian Sport Network

Five of Division One’s eight teams have “played three, won one” in what is shaping up to be a tight race for the pennant after last year’s final-day thriller. Surrey lead due to bonus points, having run into a Warwickshire side displaying more backbone that has hitherto been discernible this season. After Ian Westwood’s first dig of the season saw him anchor a competitive total of 332, the home side looked on as Mark Stoneman and Kumar Sangakkara made centuries to secure a handy lead of 105 for Surrey. But Warwickshire were in no mood to capitulate and, building on the morale fostered by taking the last five wickets for 43 runs, Ian Bell’s men batted out 123 overs for the draw, the captain making 99, Tim Ambrose 85 and the always admirable Keith Barker adding 70*. It’s a start for Warwickshire, but Surrey will worry that without Mark Footitt’s cutting edge – he was hampered by injury and out of sorts on the fourth day – they lack the firepower required to turn draws into wins.

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County cricket roundup: Ryan McLaren sparks Lancashire comeback

• Heroics with bat and ball help secure stunning victory over Somerset
• Gary Ballance saves Yorkshire against Hampshire with twin centuries

Lancashire skittled Somerset to pull off a remarkable heist at Old Trafford, having been dismissed for 109 on the first day and after conceding a 169-run first‑innings deficit.

Lancashire’s grizzled, unglamorous overseas pro, Ryan McLaren – who balances their side from No7 and offers a steady first change option – was the star of the fourth day. His eighth-wicket stand of 77, which began on the third evening, with Stephen Parry built on Alex Davies and Liam Livingstone’s extraordinary partnership of 245, to haul Lancashire to 463 and set Somerset 295 in 77 overs.

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Gareth Berg steals show to help Hampshire take command against Yorkshire

• Hampshire 455 v Yorkshire 128-6
• All-rounder Berg follows up unbeaten 99 with four wickets

On the first evening Hampshire’s captain and centurion, James Vince, laid out how his side could defy the deadest of pitches and the visitors’ vaunted batting lineup – Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow and the rest – to force their second win against Yorkshire this season: bat long, exhaust the fielders and then force wickets through tiredness and scoreboard pressure.

Related: County cricket: James Vince pushes England case with Hampshire century

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County cricket round-up: Alastair Cook’s return powers Essex past Somerset

• Cook hits century in first match since resigning England captaincy
• Yorkshire’s Ben Coad takes 10 wickets against Warwickshire

Essex and Alastair Cook are back, and mean business. In his first competitive match since resigning the England captaincy in February, Cook’s 110 – his 57th first-class century – provided the backbone of Essex’s remarkable chase of 255 against Somerset at Taunton, their first win since returning to the top flight after a six-summer absence. For Somerset, runners-up last year and brimming with youthful, local talent, this represented a disappointing start to a season they are highly fancied for.

Cook’s was an untroubled, unfussy innings in a cruise of a chase, a surprise given 18 wickets had fallen on the second day. All it took, it turned out, was some better batting, because the surface – unlike last season – offered no great help to bowlers, fast or slow. Having brought up his century with a nudged 202nd ball to leg for four, Cook fell before tea, heaving Dean Elgar to midwicket but an authoritative chase was just 39 from completion.

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County cricket talking points: Surrey top the table but it’s not an even playing field

Pre-season punishments have made the season unnecessarily complicated; Mark Footitt impressed for Surrey; and Dan Lawrence is one to watch at Essex

By Gary Naylor for the 99.94 Cricket Blog, part of the Guardian Sport Network

So, eight teams in the top flight, 10 teams in the lower: but 14 matches for each. Durham, having finished fourth in Division One last season, start this season in Division Two on -48 points with Leicestershire on -16 points, a penalty prompted by an offence committed in a university match. This just isn’t acceptable. The game is complicated enough – it’s one reason why we love it – but how is anyone, casual observer or avid fan, supposed to keep up with it all? Durham deserved some punishment (and, by God, did they get it) and Leicestershire’s disciplinary rap sheet is deeply unimpressive, but points should be won and lost on the field by scoring runs and taking wickets. You don’t have to employ the imagination of the Marquis de Sade to find sanctions that retain sporting competitions’ fundamental integrity. But, you know, county cricket, eh? Never easy, is it?

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County round-up: Warwickshire’s Trott hits century as Hants shock Yorkshire

• Jonathan Trott’s 41st first-class century steadies Warwickshire against Surrey
• Hampshire chase down 320 with four wickets in hand to beat Yorkshire

Jonathan Trott ambled to the crease, on a pair, at the end of the third day’s second over, with Warwickshire in the mire, trailing by 334 and facing an innings defeat to Surrey. By day’s end he had a 41st first-class century, and had shaved the deficit to just 41; there remain few better equipped to blunt a quality attack. In doing so, he saved Warwickshire’s blushes – no doubt on Monday he will set about saving the match.

Trott came to the crease when William Porterfield was lbw to Sam Curran and soon Jade Dernbach had Alex Mellor caught at first slip; the sense is that Trott and Ian Bell will be fighting fires with Warwickshire two down for not many plenty this season. If the circumstances left Bell looking a little frantic, then Trott was the picture of calm.

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County round-up: Lancashire’s Jimmy Anderson torments Essex with the bat

• England bowler shines in last-wicket stand; Surrey punish Warwickshire
• Gary Ballance starts Yorkshire captaincy with fine innings against Hampshire

There was plenty to interest England’s watching chairman of selectors, James Whittaker, on the season’s first day at Chelmsford. With Lancashire opting to bat first, a look at Haseeb Hameed, back from his hand injury, and Liam Livingstone, up at No3.

Then, with the shadows lengthening, Jimmy Anderson was involved in a sprightly last wicket stand of 51 as Lancashire were bowled out for 319 – a few more than Essex would have liked from 160 for six – then looked in good order, picking up the wicket of the nightwatchman Aaron Beard, as the hosts reached stumps 39 for two. Hameed’s hand held up as he looked typically tidy, making 47 before falling in uncharacteristic fashion; bowled, misjudging a leave in the second over to Jamie Porter, who managed Essex’s leap in Divisions handsomely, after lunch. Hameed had retired hurt against Cambridge MCCU last week after trapping his finger in the turf doing short-leg training. After the injury he suffered on England’s tour of India last November, he has a plate in his hand which he says will need removing – with a resulting six-week recovery period – at some stage.

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Leicestershire docked 16 points on eve of new County Championship season

• Punishment relates to incident involving bowler Charlie Shreck
• County also fined £5,000 after match against Loughborough University

Leicestershire will start their County Championship campaign on minus 16 points and with their captain, Mark Cosgrove, banned for one match after they were dramatically punished on the eve of the new season following an incident last week against Loughborough University involving their seam bowler Charlie Shreck.

The club’s punishment, which also includes a £5,000 fine and a further eight points suspended for one year, was handed down for chalking up five such incidents in the space of 12 months. They now become the second side in Division Two to start the summer with a deficit against their name after Durham were relegated for financial reasons last October and docked 48 points.

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