There were more glad tidings of comfort and joy from the twos today, as Derbyshire bowled out the MCC Young Cricketers for just 112 on the first day at Belper.
There were four wickets for Mark Turner and a couple for Ali Evans as the Lords lads failed to cope with a pitch offering a little help. So much so that we lost early wickets too, before Wes Durston, with an unbeaten 84 and Scott Elstone (again) with an unbeaten 38 saw us to the close at a healthy 167-4.
The return to form of Wes Durston is welcome and timely. I said last week that I hoped we would see him in the runs and back in the side as a consequence. We have missed his runs this summer, while his bowling is always handy and his fielding brilliant. It will not have gone unnoticed that his attitude since being dropped has also been first rate. Five wickets in the recent win, then good runs today - that's what a coach is wanting to see from a player who is looking for form and Durston could have done no more.
It should also be noted that Tom Knight has moved up the batting order at this level, as he has in club cricket. Tom has worked hard on his batting and scored a fifty last week for the Seconds. He is a long way removed from the youngster who to some extent appeared a walking wicket on his arrival in the first-class game and he earns respect for working on his game. He will, of course, be well aware of Peter Burgoyne's emergence in the side, but there could in the medium to long term be room for both in a Derbyshire XI, Peter as a batsman who offers useful overs, Tom as a bowler who can handle a bat. Both could yet emerge as genuine all-rounders and have time on their side in which to do so.
I'm looking forward to seeing our team for the Sunday game in the Pro 40, as we still have a chance of qualifying in the competition if we can string some form together. I think that most of the side picks itself, but there are a few places up for grabs. As I see it just now, it will be:
Johnson/Redfern/Borrington for the batting spot?
Wainwright/Knight/Turner for the bowling option?
What do you think?
Time to go now. Twenty-seven years of marriage for Mrs P and I today, one day after our lovely daughter Rachel got seven As and a B in her standard grades - 'O' levels for those of a certain age and geographic location.
Life is good. A continuation of form would make a nice anniversary present and cap a grand old week...