It was David v Goliath all over again at North Marine Road today, but this time Goliath came mob-handed...
Truth be told, Derbyshire were never in this game and it was a very poor display. Granted, winning the toss played a part and the ball nibbled around a little to trouble the top order, but there was a lot of unprofessional stuff went on that belied and undid much of the good that had been done in previous matches.
The batsmen struggled for timing throughout our innings and there were several scares as shots were lofted short of fielders. For us to win this game. it was fairly evident that we needed a score from Durston, North or Madsen and only the skipper hinted at anything like permanence.
When he left, the only one of the top order not to get himself out, the writing was on the wall. Billy Godleman showed a sound defence and played some of the best shots of the innings, but his infuriating habit of getting out when well set continued, leaving in a tame manner when he should have been steering the innings to calmer waters.
Scott Elstone is a good player, but should be disappointed with an unnecessary waft outside off stump to his first ball and although Alex Hughes again showed remarkable maturity in nursing the tail, there was little else to write home about. Two catches were lobbed to the man on the not too distant leg side boundary and only a few telling blows from Ben Cotton, suggesting he can handle a willow, in any way redeemed an innings on the pale side of anaemic.
To be honest, it got worse. Cotton bowled some good balls and perhaps deserved a wicket in his early spell, but something had annoyed Mark Footitt and he bowled a spell that at best could be called thoughtless, but also much worse.
He's a good lad and a fine bowler, but there were too many bouncers. One went over a helpless Gaz Cross for four byes, then in his fifth over he bowled his one for the over, followed by a presumably unintentional chest high full toss. When he then bowled another bouncer, followed by one that went for four more byes over the keeper, the umpire had no option but to request his removal from the attack.
It was poor cricket and Footitt is better than that. Yorkshire cruised to the break on 64-0 in twelve overs and the game was over as a contest.
After it they continued on their merry way and eased to victory by ten wickets. It wasn't just the defeat, but the adverse effect on our net run rate that was galling. It was an inept performance in all three areas of the game and the frustration is that the players and supporters know we are capable of much more.
We can still qualify if we beat Gloucestershire next week, but qualification now depends on other sides and not on our own efforts.
And if we play like we did today, we may as well not bother getting too excited.
Very disappointing. As my son said, on the way out of the ground, "Thank goodness we still have the rest of the holiday to look forward to."