Well, in some respects the second eleven viewing that we had earlier this week mirrored the first team - a lot of potential on view but ultimately the result went against us.
Yorkshire had a very strong side out against us on Tuesday, with first eleven players such as Joe Sayers, Simon Guy, Richard Pyrah, Chris Taylor (ex-Derbyshire), Rana Naved Ul Hasan (the overseas star, recovering from injury) and Deon Kruis the South African fast bowler. Add in David Wainwright, Jonathan (son of David) Bairstow and Ajmal Shahzad and there was some strong opposition.
To be honest, the best player on display in the first innings was Chris Taylor, who helped the visitors recover from 37-4. Ross Whiteley was the cause of the collapse with three wickets, including the brilliant caught and bowled that accounted for ex-Derbyshire player Garry Ballance who barely middled a ball and was third out at 37 for just four runs, having opened. Taylor started slowly but then opened up with some trademark drives through mid off and the covers. He and Jonathan Bairstow added 105 for the fifth wicket, the latter showing why he is such a highly rated batsman with a composed 47 before a mix up saw them both at the same end. Put it this way - Taylor wasn't going to go.
He was eventually bowled by the excellent Whitely, who took 6-74. Expensive figures but mainly down to serious hammer from Rana Naved Ul Hasan, who hit 48 not out in 24 balls with several sixes and a peppering of fours through mid wicket. He was badly dropped twice at cow shot corner, the easiest by Dan Redfern. Yorkshire's final total of 260 all out was impressive, but on a small ground was gettable. Most of the Derbyshire bowlers (White, Hunter, Paget) went for five an over, but star man was Nayan Doshi with a exemplary 10-2-23-0 who had all the batsmen in trouble and conceded only one boundary in his spell.
On the subject of the ground, full marks to Denby Cricket Club for the splendid facilities. The ground is an absolute picture and a credit to all involved.
Derbyshire began their reply against Rana Naved and Kruis with the latter giving Paul Borrington a fierce grilling. At least three balls an over beat the latter's bat, but he emerged with credit and appeared unmoved and stoical. With Fred Klokker he emerged from a painfully slow start to put on 131 for the first wicket before being run out for 54. John Sadler, captain for the day, hit a couple of fours over the top but struggled to time it and was caught for 21. Dan Redfern looked a class player from ball one and very strong through mid wicket but perished as the run rate mounted.
Akhil Patel also played some excellent shots and was unlucky to be brilliantly caught at deep extra cover just when it looked like he could take us close. When Fred Klokker was well caught off another skied shot for an excellent 105 the game was gone and we ended up 16 short of the Yorkshire total.
Conclusions? Well, this Derbyshire side was much younger than their opponents but acquitted themselves well. White was very unlucky, while Whitely looked a player to watch, as a left armer who can really move the ball and a left hand bat who times the ball crisply. Patel also looks a left hander of talent, as does Redfern (as we all know). Borrington appears quite slight, as indeed does Redfern, but I would like to see these boys given an opportunity at a higher level before the season is out, especially with the batting frailties thus far.
Side note - Mike Hendrick and David Houghton were both at the game, along with Karl Krikken, Houghton doubtless there to see his nephew Ballance. I was left with the feeling that neither the latter nor Taylor have furthered their careers in joining Yorkshire, and the latter may well have been an asset to us this season. He may well play for himself, according to some people, but at least he sells his wicket dearly. A lot of us would be happy to see that from a few people in the second half of the season