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County cricket talking points: Essex back to winning ways in title defence

Jamie Porter was the main man for Essex against Lancashire and he could do a job for England

By Gary Naylor for the 99.94 Cricket Blog

Essex won 10 of their 14 Division One matches last year and six of 16 in their promotion season (2016), so it shouldn’t be a surprise to see them win again after the last week’s Headingley bogout. But, at 94-7 just after lunch against fancied Lancashire, the Chelmsford faithful must have been wondering. A winning mentality can be as infectious as a losing one and, even by the end of that first day, the champions were probably favourites. There were handy contributions from Simon Harmer and James Foster, but Jamie Porter’s nine wickets got the home side back into the match and then finished off the visitors’ resistance, as the fourth-innings target loomed closer and closer. Porter fits the description of a late developer and, were he a spin bowler, he would probably be ascribed plenty of nous, though, for seamers, that usually just means “lost his nip”. One thing is for sure – Porter knows how to win cricket matches – and England could do with a bit of that kind of knowledge just now.

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