Sunday, 13 August 2017

Derbyshire v West Indies day 3

West Indies 427-3 and 327-6 (Powell 100 retired, Chase 60 not, Sonczak 2-56, Macdonell 2-57)

Derbyshire 181 and 51-0 

Match drawn

Three days of practice - you couldn't really call it a match  - for the West Indies ended in a somewhat predictable draw today.

Declaring at tea, or is it supper, they left us 574 to win in a session, which was as unlikely as it gets. Perhaps they could have declared and pushed for a morale-boosting win, since we hadn't got an especially strong batting line-up out there.

Instead they opted for batting practice, which saw Powell make a century before retiring and Roston Chase make his fourth score over fifty in four innings. I look forward to watching Chase against better bowling, having watched him making centuries in a couple of online videos. One of them, against Pakistan, reminded me of a young Carl Hooper in his languid style. That he bowls off spin makes it an especially apposite comparison and I suspect that there will be a county looking closely at him for an overseas role in some capacity next year.

The problem, of course, is the Caribbean Premier League and the amount of time that it takes out of our season. While their players will improve more by gaining experience on wickets around the world, the temptation to stay home and make money for less effort and disruption to their life will be strong.

Matt Sonczak will remember his debut with fondness, having bowled decently in both innings, while Charlie Macdonell also took two wickets and steered us to calm waters at the close, sharing in an unbeaten first wicket stand of 51 with Ben Slater.

I've not yet heard from anyone who was there, but it didn't strike me as the kind of game that would have one rushing for the computer to comment.

A very young Derbyshire side at least got a taste of senior cricket. For some, there was almost certainly the realisation that they have a lot of work to do. For others, perhaps, the understanding that, good players as they are, this is a level too high for them.

On the evidence of the three days, we have a decent enough first eleven, but are not yet blessed with anything like strength in depth, nor competition for places.

Food for thought come September, no doubt.

And now for a big week of T20.

I will flit in and out as time permits, but holidays beckon.


Tim, Chesterfield said...

A pointless occasion for all concerned. A few cheap FC debuts and some batting practice for the West Indies that will be of absolutely no use when Anderson and Broad are bowling at them!

Knack said...

I hope the club will refund tickets as this was a first class match in name only. This is an issue the ECB need to get a grip on. This is the worst case I have ever seen, playing juniors ?

Mark said...

What a dull game that must've been. The equivalent of the worst 0-0 draw in football probably.

Opening Bat said...

I agree, unfortunately long gone are the days when 1st teamers wanted to pit themselves against a touring team, but I suppose we will forgive the club for the team they put up if we get to finals day. I think it is a bit unfair to guage any of the team as most have only played intermittent 2nd team cricket, then to take them out for a one off game against test players and expect them to set the world alight. It does however highlight that we have very little experience outside of the 12-14 players who play all formats for DCCC.

Knack said...

I agree, it is ridiculous to put boys up against test cricketers. When the club got the fixture it was trumpets at the walls of Jericho, now, a simon and Garfunkel song.

Anonymous said...

Are people really saying we should have played a first team squad straight after a 4 day championship game and straight before the biggest game of the season ? Having all our best players playing 7 days out of 8 in completely the wrong format with one day rest. Risking injury and to an already shortened squad. Are people really saying that. I like to have a moan with the best of them but really guys. Show some common sense. JOHN from Derby by the way.

notoveryet said...

I only managed the second day of this match, mostly to see if day/night cricket was as grim an experience as the one I had at Cardiff a few weeks ago. The cricket aside, it was every bit as grim, in a sparsely populated, cold, dingy, half-lit ground. if you have a crowd, warm weather, and high-octane cricket, night-time cricket can be fun, but otherwise it's unpleasant and quite alienating. A few people have commented about the lack of atmosphere at the County Ground, even for T20 matches, and the problem I think (magnified by the small crowd who were at this game) is that the ground has about a third which is totally unpopulated apart from the small stands near the media centre. From the demolitions stand round to the Gateway stand, there is essentially a great blank area, which used to be quite well-populated in front of the two old scoreboards and the marquee, now fenced off and empty. Likewise, the area in front of the pavilion, which means that the two big stands are themselves separated from each other. Hopefully there are plans in place to address this, as otherwise it's disappointing if all of the improvements there have been in the last couple of years result in a ground that looks near empty even when the two main stands are full.

On the cricket itself, I think commentators have been harsh on Derbyshire's batting. They may be no great shakes as a test team overall, but the West Indies have a decent bowling attack as they showed against Pakistan, and certainly much stronger than any we've faced in Division 2 - Notts at full strength with Broad, Ball and Patterson would have been better, but we never had to face them. Once the WI bowlers hit their straps in the second innings, and perhaps helped by dew settling on the wicket, they were a real handful, and it's unfair to judge an inexperienced batting line-up on this one showing. After all, they did about as well as our first-team batting has been doing in some of their recent showings against much weaker second division attacks.

Less has been said about the bowling, but for me it was alarming how anodyne and harmless it looked. Taylor, Milnes and Palladino is a couple of injuries away from being our first team opening bowling, and that's w real worry. Taylor (the older) was the real disappointment. Before the T20 break, he looked as if he was improving steadily, bowling spells of real control and menace, even though he was still inconsistent. Here and against Notts, he's looked very ordinary again, and with Milnes, Cotton and Cork showing so little improvement or development, some hard questions are going to have to be faced.

Knack said...

Agreed the choices presented were all bad, just saying the situation is ridiculous. Surely all the clever people on the big salaries could have seen the problem and acted but no,the public have to pay first class prices and the West Indies are given inadequate preparation. Or is it just tough luck.

Anonymous said...

whilst I accept the cricket was far from riveting it did create some positives from my point of view. Some 2nd eleven lads getting some valuable time on a proper fast bouncing wicket instead of the slow low club wickets they've had to endure this season. I'm sure all the young guys who played got a lot out of the encounter. Watched most of the 3 days except the last throws of a wet Friday evening. Yes the bowling looked weak against a test side all be it not a great one. To be expected UI would think. These guys are finding their way in the game and will only benefit from having their comfort levels stretched. Batting was reasonably encouraging. Good Knock from young Broderick on his debut. Charlie Macnonald dug in against the new ball in the final innings showing character against some fast and lively bowling. Slater showed he is also capable of scoring runs at the higher level. Wood also batted well for an hour on Saturday when the bowlers where at their nastiest. In all a one sided game but not a waste of time in my eyes. I was never more than an average club player. However my skills definitely improved the more I was subjected to playing in a higher standard. If we ever want these young lads to develop as first class cricketers the only way to do it is to push them outside their comfort zones. Some will perish, some will kick on. The club needs to settle on a balance between win at all costs with hired guns or throw all the young lads in like last year. Somewhere in the middle is what we should be aiming for. The young lads all show potential but need testing to see if they can step up. First team should now be well rested and hopefully fully back into T20 mode for tonight's clash. Cant remember when I've been so exited about a Derbyshire fixture and nervous as well. Feels like a cup final now. Last thought. Poor practice for the Windies ? Good. Why should we help to get them battle prepped before our boys rip into them on Thursday. Come on Derbyshire. This is our time. Seize the day (John in Derby)