Monday, April 11, 2011

Winning start for new-look Glos

LVCC: Gloucestershire 343 & 146-3 beat Derbyshire 157 & 331 by seven wickets (PTS: Glos 21, Derbys 3)

This victory is exactly what Gloucestershire needed. A new look outfit performed well in many areas to win comfortably but far sterner tests are in store.

There was definitely a sense that Gloucestershire had removed a lot of their old wood. Too early to judge but there may be something in this policy of youth.

The bowling attack looks like it can threaten. The greatest fear allayed I think. Liam Norwell was a real handful and Ian Saxelby bowled superbly for large periods of the second innings. David Payne took wickets and Jon Lewis was his usual dependable self.

But all of the bowlers - save Lewis - went for quick runs. This needs to be addressed because you cannot concede four-an-over all season. The lack of spinner also presents problems.

The batting was average. Will Gidman's innings was a delight; runs for Jon Batty encouraging; but failures for the top order - particularly Chris Taylor in his unusual new role at number four - against the weakest bowling attack in the division is cause for concern. It is disappointing that the captain hides himself at number five and exposes youngsters to the new ball.

One would envisage the returning Hamish Marshall will replace Richard Coughtrie at Glamorgan. When Kane Williamson arrives he could well replace Taylor if Ian Cockbian and Chris Dent outscore him in Cardiff - a scenario that would be pleasing to many Gloucestershire supporters.

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