Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Glos emerge on top after crazy first day

DAY 1 Close: Derbyshire 44 & 127-4 lead Gloucestershire 156 by 15 runs (PTS: Derbys 3, Glos 3)
LIVE ball-by-ball commentary on www.gloscricketradio.co.uk

So much happened on day one at Bristol it was hard to take it all in: the game was so advanced by tea.

The morning session was ridiculous. James Franklin was exceptional at landing the ball in the best areas - full was how to bowl. At one stage Franklin had taken five without conceding a run as Derbyshire resembled a club 3rd X1 - their batting showed no where near the footwork required in testing conditions.

But come the very warm afternoon, the home side lost their way with the ball; they didn't make the batsmen play enough and it took a needless run-out to break an extremely comfortable opening stand as Derbyshire batted again.

Once again there was nothing wrong with the Bristol surface - exceptional swing bowling and poor batting were the cause of 24 wickets.

The ease at which Hamish Marshall and Chris Taylor added 69 was testament to that. Taylor, Franklin and Alex Gidman straight after lunch, threw their wickets away. It was as if they got caught up in the drama of the day. Gloucestershire rattled along at 4.43 an over yet only managed 156 - bar Marshall, no-one could occupy the crease.

The lead wasn't important: bonus points were. Gloucestershire's inability to apply themselves - admittedly in testing conditions - resulted in no bonus points. Derbyshire, the industrious Graeme Wagg aside, are a poor bowling unit and 300-plus should have been more than achievable.

But three 19-point victories should put Gloucestershire in with a great shout of promotion; the win is what counts. But the hosts definitely missed a trick - they should have tried to slow the game down and build a total to score bonus points: every one counts at this stage of the season.

LIVE coverage continues tomorrow on www.gloscricketradio.co.uk

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