Derbyshire 307 and 286-8 (Madsen 134 not, Hosein 58)
Leicestershire 247 (Davis 4-68, Palladino 3-27)
Derbyshire lead by 346 runs
A fifth century of the season for Wayne Madsen today put Derbyshire into a position where they could feasibly break their duck for the championship season tomorrow.
With a game to go, Wayne is just short of 1200 runs for the summer and averages a touch under 60, highlighting once more how important he is to the cause. The pair he got recently was a momentary 'blip' in another golden season, one that earned him the Player of the Year award today.
We were in a pickle at 57-5, but Harvey Hosein once again came in and underlined his growing credentials. Getting out towards the end of the day took his average down to a piffling 128, but he has laid down the gauntlet to whoever comes in as wicket-keeper that there is battle ahead for that first choice role.
For me, that was part of the appeal of Daryn Smit. He is a good enough bat to just play in that role, or as a spinner to offer valuable options - a Wes Durston-type player as Wes was a few seasons back. If Harvey needed a break, Smit could then have taken the gloves. It would - could - be a very handy utility signing.
I had a few messages today asking if I thought Steven Davies might be headed our way on leaving Surrey, My answer was simple - no.
Davies is on a seriously good contract at The Oval and wants to leave for a county where he is guaranteed keeping wicket. Unless we plan shooting ourselves in the foot with a twelve-bore, we don't want to block Harvey's path, merely have an adequate plan B in place and competition for the role. If that player is good enough with the bat to play as a specialist if required, so much the better.
Let's hope for that win tomorrow, to end the home season on a high.
Finally tonight, in the light of the decision to introduce a city-based T20 made today, I have brought in a poll for the first time in a while. Maybe I am alone, but I'm just curious how many people are actually interested in this. If there's money coming to the county as a consequence that's fair enough, but I remain to be convinced that it will attract the support that it will need.
So will you travel to Nottingham (I assume) to support a city franchise team of some name or another?
I'll leave it up for a week and see how it goes.