Once again today, on a pitch that continued to offer some help to bowlers, Derbyshire did as well as could have been expected and, before the rains came. moved into the lead against Leicestershire.
There were contributions down the order, although the continued travails of Ross Whiteley mean our batting is less robust than looked the case at the start of the summer. Whiteley hasn't passed 50 since the opening game and probably needs the more relaxed fields of the T20 to go out and simply have a hit. His bowling was off yesterday too, but he is crucial to the balance of this side and we really need him to find form, particularly for the short game when he could be so destructive.
It appears to be a wicket where scoring runs isn't an issue but staying in can be, with successive batsmen getting in and then out again. How much play there is tomorrow is a moot point, but if we could squeeze another hundred runs from the last five wickets that would be a handy lead going into the last day.
The weather may well have the last laugh, but as long as it rains everywhere else that won't worry us too much. Again there is a lot resting on the shoulders of Dan Redfern, who has emerged this summer as the batsman we all expected when he first burst onto the scene as a young, slight teenager. Redfern looks every inch a batsman of class and is another who, with David Wainwright and Jon Clare, could force his way into England Lions squads before long. Wainwright kept him good company today in a welcome return to batting form and have played Derbyshire into the ascendancy in the match.
I still cannot see past a draw, but I didn't expect enough cricket today for us to move into the lead. We could do with a little more fortune from the rain gods over the next couple of days, but I'd be very surprised if we got it.