Thursday, 31 May 2018

Derbyshire v Yorkshire RLODC

Derbyshire 189-6 (Slater 109)

Yorkshire 192-8 (Kohler-Cadmore 81, Rampaul 5-48)

Yorkshire won by two wickets.

There was no disgrace in Derbyshire losing to Yorkshire yesterday, a side that included seven international cricketers.

Indeed, had Luis Reece not sustained a foot injury that caused him to retire hurt, there's a fair old chance we would have won. Reece was just getting into his stride when the injury occurred and no one after him could get going and support the superb Ben Slater.

There are two things worthy of mention at this point. One is that I sincerely hope discussions are ongoing with Ben over a new deal. His current one runs out at the end of the season and, as I have written before it started, it is a big year for him. While he still needs to convert more of his very impressive cameos into big scores, his form this year has been excellent and he seems to me to be reaping the benefits of technical work over the winter, together with adding some bulk to his body.

He has always looked a slight lad, but he is changed for the better now and can hit the boundaries more easily. There is still a tendency to get out when he is crashing fours around, perhaps getting over-confident, but he is a fine player and fully deserving of a longer deal.

The second is that for me he has played his way into the T20 side. I think him a better option than Billy Godleman in T20 and would be a great partner for Matt Critchley in that format. He is fleet-footed and a very good fielder, so that could be another piece of the jigsaw in place.

The injury to Reece obviously affected our bowling plans, of which he is a key component. Could there have been better use of Alex Hughes or Wayne Madsen, who each only bowled two inexpensive overs? Duanne Olivier again bowled a telling and economical spell in which he took key wickets, but I'm not sure that Hardus Viljoen has yet discovered rhythm this summer and he again went for nine an over. He looks quite laboured in his run up at this stage, compared to the latter part of last season.

It's tough though, because death bowling in these games, with shortish boundaries and big bats, is a lottery. You have to outwit the batsmen and as Ravi Rampaul found too, when they are moving around in their crease, there's a 50/50 chance of your line being right. And bowling at Viljoen's pace, an edge travels a long way, quickly.

Kohler-Cadmore played the match-winning innings, but when he went the odds switched to a Derbyshire win. Yet Fisher got away with an edged four and from then on rode his luck. He played some good shots too and nothing can be taken away from him or Yorkshire.

I thought Rampaul bowled better yesterday and his five wickets were a good return for his efforts. Like a few others I have been critical of him at times, but he did a decent job against strong opponents.

There are times in a season when you play 'big' teams and they have all the big names present and will thrash you. Yesterday, Yorkshire had a few missing but a very strong side out - and we took it to the death.

Our destiny still lies very much in our own hands as we move to Northampton on Friday, then welcome Lancashire to the 3aaa County Ground on Sunday. We will be without Luis Reece for the rest of the group games, after it was confirmed today he has a broken metatarsal. It will be a big loss, but his absence affords opportunity to someone else, who must grasp it.

More from me in due course.


  1. As usual for any match against Yorkshire, the patronising and self-satisfied smugness of their supporters was in stark contrast to a performance in which their team were a poor second for large parts of the match. A side so rich (and expensive) in talent should be top of the group and sweeping all before them, not struggling to get their noses in front of the poor neighbours. It speaks to me of a county in which not all is well, and it won't surprise me to see them fighting against relegation. It is particularly galling that a county so heavily in debt (albeit to Colin Groves family trust - in which I hasten to add in case you get sued, Groves himself has no interest or role) continues to hunt down and poach talent from elsewhere despite the rich resources they can draw on. I am sickened by the fact that it is to enable the likes of Yorkshire to manage their self-imposed debts and continue to suck the lifeblood from smaller counties that the entire structure of county cricket is being put at risk by Groves and his place-men and women, and seeing their team play so poorly so often just makes it worse.

    Anyway, rant over. It was disappointing that we weren't able to control things after Kohler-Cadmore was out, but whereas 30 off the last 2 overs used to be as rare as hen's teeth, it's now commonplace, even for tailenders, and frankly neither Plunkett nor Fisher are tailenders in the sense that we understand them. Like you, I thought Rampaul bowled very well and is now looking like the bowler we thought we were getting. Critchley comfortably out-bowled Rashid, and it's a measure of how well he's developed that he's bearing that kind of comparison. Hughes should perhaps have had the last over instead of Viljoen, although he himself hadn't bowled particularly well in his earlier spell. I think Derbyshire have to think about dropping Viljoen whose bowling is ragged and unthreatening (worth noting that he's bottom of the RLODC batting AND bowling averages), and with Reece now missing the rest of the competition, we need to have someone who we can trust to bowl a full spell. At the moment, that isn't Viljoen, and on his showing in the first two games, nor is Sharif. I'd like to see how Davis goes, accepting that while his economy might be a risk, his ability to take wickets generally isn't.

    In fairness, though, the bowlers didn't lose this one, and demanding change among them is a bit like dropping Stuart Broad because England's batting is so poor. Again, there was the feeling that Derbyshire were perhaps 20 runs short of where they should have been from the half-way stage. As I pointed out before this game, this has been the case in all of the games apart from Warwickshire, and it's this that keeps on putting us into tight finishes, and it's inevitable that we were going to come up on the wrong end of one. This one was more excusable because of the loss of Reece, not only because the new batsmen didn't settle, but because Slater also lost impetus until the last couple of balls. Neither Wilson or Smit did much to support my argument for them to come in before Hughes and Critchley, but this was actually a situation with only a handful of overs left, where the power of Critchley and Hughes might have done more damage. It's hard to escape the feeling that the pieces are there in the batting but they aren't necessarily being fitted in the right place. All three matches are probably now must-wins as the head-to-head results would keep us above everyone but Worcs and Yorkshire.

  2. If Palladino had bowled that final over we'd have won. I think we all knew the outcome when Viljoen was given the ball, in no form whatsoever at present and shouldn't be playing in this one day tournament.

  3. Paul Fitzpatrick31 May 2018 at 18:21

    To be honest we LOST this game by our own making
    Death bowling has been patchy for the whole tournament
    Fixing a problem usually means taking a different approach to the one that gave you a problem
    Worcester Red warning
    Leicester Amber Warning
    Yorkshire ! Eat Sleep Repeat Defeat

  4. A very tough loss to take given the unlikely source (Fisher) of 24 runs from 8 balls to win the game for Yorkshire. The loss of Reece is a massive blow and affects the whole balance of the side. I feel that, because of Luis' performances with the ball, he's only second to Madsen in the list of players you would not want to lose for this format. In short, I suspect the Yorkshire match will be terminal for the chances of a Quarter-Final place, particularly as Lancashire are finally getting into gear.
    I hope I am wrong; there are at least a lot of positives that the margins are so fine.
    Thoroughly agree that Slater is becoming a fine player - saw enough at Southport last year to know the technique and talent is there.


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