Yorkshire v Gloucestershire County Championship Div 2 June 25-28 at Headingley

Neil Whitaker reports

Day 1

YORKSHIRE opener Finlay Bean hit his second Championship century of the season and shared in a fourth wicket partnership of 153 with George Hill as Yorkshire put Gloucestershire to the sword.

Their  hundred partnership came up with a no ball as it did, so did the wind and it looked like play would be interrupted by rain but it didn’t come until the final session at 5.50 and then  only for half an hour.

Bean attacked leg spinner Zafar Gohar by slog/sweeping his second ball over the mid wicket boundary for a six.  He reached his 50, which came from 59 balls and included eight fours and that six, with a couple of  Ben Charlesworth.

On 63 Bean nearly yorked himself off Zafar Gohar and in the second over after lunch Bean got cramped up for space and attempted to cut it and it was a good job he didn’t as the ball went through to James Bracey.

Bean swept Zafar Gohar to the fine leg boundary and  pulled Charlesworth to the mid wicket boundary to bring up his second championship century of the season.  His century came from 140 balls and included 14 fours and a six. Their partnership ended when he  pulled Zaman  Akhter straight to Charlesworth at the mid wicket boundary.  With Hill they added 153 in 35 overs.

He said: “I like to think that concentration is my biggest asset.  I am disappointed that I didn’t get a big score but a hundred is a hundred. It’s a nice pitch to bat on but early the Kookaburra  ball did swing but after 15 to overs you start to pile on the runs.  It will be nice to build on that score and push on. We’ll try to get to maximum batting points and then hope to take early wickets with the Kookaburra. It would be nice to get back to back wins that would get us on a roll. I thought Hill looked in good order.”

Hill took a couple of steps down the pitch to Zafar Gohar and chipped him over the mid wicket boundary for a six.  He cut Graeme Van  Buuren for a single to bring up his fifty from 82 balls with seven fours and a six.  After bringing up the 200 with  a boundary off Oliver  Price to the fine leg boundary he chipped the next ball to the long off boundary.  

He reached his first Championship century in Yorkshire  when he clipped  Charlesworth through mid  wicket for a single; his  previous two came last year at Northampton and Southampton.  His century came from 177 balls and included 13 fours and two sixes, He faced another two balls before edged a drive off Ollie  Price and stumper Bracey took a simple catch.  With Jonny Tattersall they added 111 in 26 overs including 17 from  a Zafar Gohar over to take their partnership past 50.  

Tattersall went under the radar but still scored at a rapid rate before he became Matthew Taylor’s third victim of the day.  Taylor angled one in at Tattersall and Ollie Price at second slip took a good catch moving to his left,

Yorkshire captain Shan Masood won the toss on a hot morning and decided to bat in a match where they are using the Kookaburra ball.  After hitting three fours in 14 balls and looking in good form Adam Lyth tried to leave a widish ball  Taylor which brushed his bat and Ollie Price at second slip took the catch moving to his left.  Three balls later Shan Masood tried to work Taylor and was plumb leg before for a duck.

Dawid Malan missed out on hitting Charlesworth’s first ball into the stand by underedging  a poor short ball and stumper Bracey took a legside catch.

Gloucestershire seamer Matthew Taylor said: “There was a bit going on today. It was quite fast-scoring, and we got a few wickets. There’s no doubt we weren’t at our best, which is something we’ll be looking to put right tomorrow. I felt ok. I tried to bowl nice and tight. There was enough in the pitch. There was a bit of swing for me and a bit of bounce from the pitch - but not as much nip with the Kookaburra. Thankfully I got a few wickets.

Hopefully we can get the early wickets. It will be tough against the new ball when we come to bat. But once you get through that, scoring can become a bit easier.”

Yorkshire gave debuts to Aussie Mark Steketee and Daniel Moriarty.    Steketee has joined Yorkshire initially for the next four Championship matches and Moriarty has joined from Surrey for the three Championship matches while off spinner Dom Bess has joined Warwickshire for a month’s loan.

Day 2

MATTHEW  Revis hit his first Championship century for Yorkshire in his 14th Championship match before they declared on 550 for nine with Revis unbeaten on 104.

Before his century his two previous best Championship scores were both in the 50's and at Headingley. An enterprising eighth wicket partnership of 71  between Revis and Dom Leech took the match beyond Gloucestershire’s reach and ended when Leech edged a full blooded drive of Ollie  Price, Miles Hammond took a sharp  catch at slip moving to his right. 

Revis said: “It was pretty special, it’s a reward for the hard work I put in during the winter.  It’s opened my eyes to where I want to go as a batter, being able to build an innings, so I am really pleased.  It felt like a balanced innings so I am pleased with that.  With Leech we played every ball on its merit and looking for that final batting point.  Hopefully tomorrow we can kick on  and put ourselves in a good position.”

Leach playing his first Championship match for two years slog/swept Zafar Gohar over mid wicket boundary for six.  Then he slogged  Zaman Akhter to the mid wicket boundary.  Two  balls he top edged Zaman Akhter over the slips to the third man boundary to bring up their 450 and gave Yorkshire maximum batting points.   By this stage the fight seemed to have disappeared from the Gloucestershire players as they seemed to be content in keeping the runs down.

Revis reached his century with a cover  drive off Zafar Gohar.  His ton came  from 182 balls with 10 fours and a six when he fetched Van Buuren from well outside his off stump to the wide long on boundary for a six.

Gloucestershire had started the morning so well getting a wicket in the first over. After beating Matthew Fisher’s edge five times, MattTaylor finally found Fisher's edge and James Bracey took a comfortable catch.

In the third over after lunch on loan signing Mark Steketee, after adding one, ran down the pitch to Zafar Gohar, missed the ball and gave Bracey an easy stumping and Zafar Gohar his first wicket of the match.

One on loan signing was replaced by another and Revis was prepared to let Daniel Moriarty have some of the strike.  Moriarty repaid him by seeing Revis through to his  century. After 13 balls of blocking  Moriarty went down the pitch to Zafar Gohar and drove him to the boundary and then the declaration came.

Chris Dent and Ben Charlesworth looked to have taken Gloucestershire through the danger period with the Kookaburra ball when Dent flashed at Leech and Adam  Lyth at second slip took the catch in his midriff to give Leech his first Championship wicket.

Charlesworth opened his shoulders against Moriarty and drove him on to the middle tier of the Howard stand after his first two overs were maidens.

Moriarty got his first wicket for Yorkshire on the stroke of tea when Grant Roelfsen pushed forward at him and umpire Neil Mallender put his finger up straight away.  He got his second wicket when Charlesworth edged a drive off him and Lyth at slip took the catch.  As the Yorkshire players celebrated Charlesworth stood his ground as there was a puff of dust and he thought he had the ball into the ground.  The umpires consulted and Charlesworth was on his way back to the hutch.

Revis added: “Moriarty bowled really well, it’s tough to bowl spin at Headingley but he put the ball in the right areas and he’s had a good day.”

Gloucestershire captain Graeme Van Buuren pulled a short ball from Moriarty, got an underedge to it and Jonny Tattersall took the catch at the second attempt.  Could the visitors survive the day.

Moriarty came for some stick from Hammond who  hit him for  three straight sixes including one where he went down the pitch to Moriarty and threw the kitchen sink at him and another one over wide long off.  Hammond’s fourth six was also wider and brought up his 50 from 60 balls.

Moriarty wasn’t the only one who took stick from Hammond as Bracey joined in as well as they added 96 in 66 minutes.  It was Lyth, his first bowling spell in the Championship this season, who broke the partnership  when Bracey edged a push off him to George Hill at slip. Revis said: “That last wicket tonight has given us a boost for tomorrow.”

 Bracey said: “We’re in a decent enough position, though we’d have liked to have been in a slightly better one. It’s a good wicket, and we’ve played well in short periods. It’s a bit frustrating for the lads who are out that we’ve started and not gone on. But we’ve still got two of our top players in, and Hammond going  brilliantly. 

Hopefully tomorrow we can have a big couple of sessions and get ourselves towards parity.  Taylor getting. Matthew Fisher early was good, and there was still a bit in it. If we held our lines and lengths, we looked like getting wickets. But they played well, and something we’ve struggled with is mopping sides up. It’s still something we’re trying to get better at, as with the bat as well. We need to score some more hundreds and put in match-winning performances rather than showing a lot of promise and then finding a way to get out.”

Day 3

ONLY 38 overs were possible on the third day due to morning rain and bad light which  stopped play three times with Gloucestershire having saved the follow on and Ollie Price three runs short off his maiden Championship century.

Play on the third day started at 2.15 and  34 overs were lost and after an hour bad light stopped play for 24 minutes.  Ollie and his brother Tom Price broke the Gloucestershire record seventh wIcket partnership against Yorkshire with 162  beating the 122 made by GL Jessop and FH Bateman at Bradford Park Avenue in 1900.

Tom Price said: “Yorkshire were in the driving seat but we knew that it was a good wicket and if we fought hard we could get ourselves in a good position and I am really pleased with our fight back.”

They came together in the third over of the day at the fall of Miles Hammond’s wicket. Hammond went down the pitch to the second ball of the day from Daniel  Moriarty and launched him straight into the Howard stand to take him into the 90’s.  In Moriarty’s next over Hammond went for another six but holed out  to Dom Leech a couple of yards in from the long on boundary. With Gloucestershire 154 from avoiding the follow on and Hammond on the cusp of a big hundred it looked to be a foolish shot to play in  the circumstances.

Tom Price added: “I thought  Hammond’s knock was a fantastic one and we know what a fantastic clean striker of the ball he is. I’d have loved for him to get his hundred which he deserved.  We spent so much time in the field that it was awesome to see.”

It was younger brother Ollie who took the initiative against the Yorkshire bowlers. Ollie Price hit Moriarty for consecutive fours using the sweep shot, the first was fine and plamed  over by Mark  Steketee on the fine leg boundary.  He reversed swept Adam Lyth to the point boundary. He brought up his 50 which came from 82 balls and included seven fours and a six  when he clipped Steketee through mid wicket for three.

As well as finding the boundaries regularly the brothers hurried and scampered between the wickets as if they were in a run chase  but the follow on had still to be saved.  The turning point came when Yorkshire took the new ball immediately it was available and it swung, to the boundary Ollie hit three of them and there were four byes. It continued to swing in the second over with another three fours this time to Tom.  When bad light stopped play for the second time at 4.51 the brothers had added 45 in four  overs with the new ball.

Tom Price said: “Ollie was playing the spinners really well and we got on a roll with the new ball.  It was really special to bat with him. The message from the dressing room was to look to score and be positive.  I think Ollie will sleep well tonight but he might be a little bit nervous.  Hopefully tomorrow he will get his hundred and get us close to their total.”

Tom Price drove George Hill to the long on boundary to bring up his 50 and saved the follow on.  His 50 came from 93 balls and included seven fours.  He hooked the next ball over fine leg for a six. Then played over a ball that didn’t get as high as he thought and lost his off stump to Hill.

Zafar Gohar gloved a short ball from Leech to stumper Jonny Tattersall before bad light stopped play for the  third and final time.

Day 4

THE  match petered out to a draw on the final day with neither side having the intent to force a victory. 

Gloucestershire batted for another 35 minutes before both overnight batters were dismissed. It took Ollie Price five balls of the first over to reach his maiden Championship hundred for Gloucestershire when he glanced George Hill off his legs to the fine leg boundary.  His ton came 145 balls and included 15 fours and a six. 

He  said: “I didn’t go to bed last night but I didn’t get nervous until this morning.  It was really nice to get over the line and reach my century. I think I grew in confidence over the past year.”

Price  was the last man out when he played over a sweep  off Dan Moriarty and was bowled. Matt Taylor edged his first ball of the day from Dom  Leech  and Hill at first slip took a regulation catch.  Zaman  Akhter was unbeaten with an enterprising 26 which included four fours in a last wicket partnership of 39 with Price taking  Gloucestershire to their fifth batting point.  Moriarty finished with five for 139 on his Yorkshire debut.

Trailing by 86 Gloucestershire thought they had made a breakthrough when Finlay Bean on 11 played and missed at Tom Price but umpire Neil Mallender was unmoved.  They finally got Bean with the third ball after lunch when pushed forward at  Zafar Gohar and edged him to James Bracey.

Adam Lyth swept Zafar Gohar to the fine leg boundary to bring up his 50 from 77 balls with six fours and the 50 partnership with Shan Masood.  This was the only stage in the day where it looked like  Yorkshire would put  their foot on the gas. 

After  he  added another two  he edged Zaman Akhter and Ollie Price at slip  took a low catch inches from the ground moving to his left. Six runs later Shan Masood tried reverse sweeping Zafar Goher and lost his middle stump.

After rain had stopped play for 25 minutes and seven overs were lost Dawid Malan tried to cut Zafar Gohar but it was too close to him and Bracey took his second catch of the innings.

Ben Charlesworth struck with his first ball of the innings when Jonny Tattersall pushed at him and Charlesworth took his outside edge and Ollie Price at slip took the catch moving to his left at the second attempt.

Much to the embarrassment of Chris Dent, who bowled medium pacers instead of his left arm spin, enticed an edge from Hill to Ollie Price who took his third slip catch of the innings.  As Hill walked past Dent, he patted Hill on the back as if to say sorry.  As Matthew Fisher reached the crease the rain came back and there was no further play.

Ollie Price added: “I thought the result was a fair result after we had lost the toss and they scored 550. It was a very good wicket and I thought that Yorkshire played well on the first couple of days.

Miles Hammond’s innings was a reflection of the type of cricket we want to play, he played beautifully and he took the option of hitting out against Moriarty.  I think that was the turning point of our innings and laid the foundations for us to pass the follow-on mark which was a crucial point of the game.

I thought Tom batted really well and when we bat together we always have a good time.  I didn’t have a clue that we had broken a seventh wicket partnership until we came off, out on the field we just wanted to pass the follow on mark.”

Yorkshire coach Ottis Gibson said: “I feel like when we’ve played well like we did in the first innings or like we did at Sussex, the rain follows us around. Yesterday, it just took too much time out of the game.  Today, the idea to set something up was there in the back of your mind. But we knew there was rain coming in again this afternoon. Then, the question was, ‘Will we have enough time to set them something that is realistic for us to have an impact in the game?’ In the end, we opted to just play and see out the game. It’s still a frustrating last two days given the way we played in the first two days. 

Since last year, we’ve been trying to promote young players. Hill played a lot of cricket last year and got 700 runs I think. There’s been a lot of investment as well in  Revis, so it was really good to see him get a hundred. Bean,earned his contract with that second-team 400 at Nottinghamshire last year and has got two hundreds already in the first team this year. From that we’re absolutely delighted with the work we’re doing here to develop young players.

Bowling spin at Headingley is very difficult. Dom Bess has  not had the best of times. I felt like if we could bring in  Moriarty to work alongside Bess, that would give us a better opportunity to win games. That was the intention. I’m not sure I’d have played two spinners on that pitch, I have to be honest. But there will be opportunities when we go away or later in the year to play spinners. Moriarty came in and gave us nice control, and he got five wickets. With regards to Bess, he’s still our player. When I told him he wasn’t going to play this game, he asked to go on loan. But when his loan period finishes, he’ll come back to us. He’s been brilliant in the Blast. He is available for Friday night.”


June 27, 2023 10:42 am

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