The Final Over of the Week in County Cricket also appears at Spin Cricket.
Ball One – Durham were all out twice in fewer than 90 overs at their Test ground, but still registered their first win of the season in the County Championship, They remain bottom of the table and will look to avoid being one of the two from four to be relegated in the upcoming late summer dogfight.
Ball Two – Worcestershire, just a place above, batted a few more overs than Durham down at Hove, but were still hammered by Sussex whose pace and spin was too much for Daryl Mitchell’s men. Sussex’s mix of experienced pros not quite good enough for international cricket and south coast weather might just be what’s needed over the next few weeks. And Monty could be their new Mushy when in comes to securing the pennant.
Ball Three – Just above the trapdoor sit Surrey who will see the draw away at high-flying Warwickshire as a platform to push to a mid-table finish. Following-on with a day to survive, youngsters Zafar Ansari (20), Rory Burns (21) and Jason Roy (22) held out against five international bowlers. With Chris Adams looking to rebuild Surrey’s batting after Tom Maynard’s tragic death, he’ll need his players to show the maturity displayed at Edgbaston – it hasn’t always been evident.
Ball Four – Completing the nervous quartet is Lancashire, last year’s champions and this year’s relegation candidates. Perhaps being back at Liverpool summoned something of the spirit of 2011, but it wasn’t enough to force the win over Somerset as rain washed out what was shaping up to be a thrilling finish. That doesn’t mask the fact that Lancashire were 129-6 and 50-6 in their two innings – Surrey won’t be the only county looking to shore up their batting in the close season.
Ball Five – Glamorgan, would you believe, got the only win of the week in Division Two, the old Croft and Cosker double act taking 12 Gloucestershire wickets to lift the Welsh county off the bottom of the table. Of course, the spinners do know how to take wickets, having more than four times as many between them as all 11 of their opponents. After a terrible season with the weather, it’s a good to see a little cheer in the Principality.
Ball Six – At Trent Bridge, the most swing-friendly ground in England, Surrey and Nottinghamshire played out a 40 overs match using just three pace bowlers for just 17 overs work. Limited overs cricket strategies are making pace redundant – soon it won’t be pacemen developing slower ball variations, it’ll be slow bowlers developing quicker ball variations.
You can tweet me @garynaylor999