Today saw a good fight back by Derbyshire and while the weather looks like having the final say in this match, we are still very much in it at this stage. All we need is a return to the days of uncovered wickets and the next two days would have been a real barrel of laughs for Gloucestershire...
Scott Elstone confirmed his talent with an innings that showed the battling side of his many qualities, though there will be other days as the summer progresses that better suit his flowing strokeplay. He confirmed that he is much more than a one-trick pony and would appear to have cemented the number five slot for the immediate future - and rightly so.
It was also good to see David Wainwright in the runs. The Yorkshireman had built a reputation before he joined us as a battling lower order player and hasn't really fulfilled that role in Derbyshire colours. He has to now though, because Tom Knight is breathing down his neck and putting genuine pressure on him for the spinners role. With both making runs recently, it shows that they are far removed from bowling specialists and their battle for supremacy can only benefit the side.
I don't know how many of you saw the footage of yesterday's play on the ECB website, but it emphasised how hard the batsmen had to work for their runs. To my memory we have won only one toss this summer and chose that occasion to bowl indifferently. On other occasions, I'd have expected our seam attack to do what others have done to us, as batting has been hard work in the early season around the country.
Wayne Madsen acknowledged his error that saw Paul Borrington run out yesterday, which is indicative of the man he is. The compact, no frills style of the latter is suited to awkward tracks and whatever some may think of him I value his battling style. Yesterday could have been his day for the innings that made more people realise what he brings to a side, but it was sadly cut short.
The ball that hit Madsen on the helmet yesterday was the type that all batsmen dread and it sowed doubt in their minds. It wasn't unduly short, but it flew off a decent length and to hit a batsman of Madsen's ability shows how unexpected it was. Similarly, the ball that took Marcus North's off stump was unbelievable and came back into him with the trajectory of a boomerang. There's no playing such deliveries and as a batsman your only hope is that they miss you or your stumps when they misbehave in such a manner. The way our luck is going at present, that's not going to happen..
So to a third day which looks like being severely truncated, as does the fourth. I'd like to see some good bowling and plenty of reasons to be cheerful if we do get a chance to bowl in this game, but the possibilities of a positive result would appear slim.
More tomorrow - but I suspect it will be a minimalist piece with little play to write about...