Francois du Plessis scored a County Championship best to help Lancashire take three batting bonus points from the final day of their drawn match against Warwickshire at Edgbaston today.
The 25 year-old South African hit 79 off 86 balls to help the Red Rose county to 317 all out in reply to the home side’s 403-8 declared. Mark Chilton also recorded 85 off 120 balls, hitting nine boundaries in a pleasurable innings.
See the highlights tomorrow on www.Lancs.TV
Du Plessis and Chilton shared 143 in 27 overs for the fifth wicket to help recover from 101-4 to take the county to the verge of their second batting bonus point.
Chilton then advanced to his highest four-day score since April to help secure batting points two and three. Naqaash Tahir claimed 4-55 and Ant Botha 4-86 - both bowled 17 overs - for the hosts.
“Our goal was to get 350, but while me and Chilly were together we said 350 to 400,” said du Plessis, who hit eleven fours. “It was disappointing not to get that extra point, but you can’t be too disappointed at 300 in a day.”
“It’s a good ground to bat on, so it would have been nice to have played a full game,” he continued in reference to the fact that only 198.1 overs were possible in the match due to rain.
Warwickshire bowler Chris Woakes finished unbeaten on 37 and Naqaash was 18 not out when the hosts declared their first innings this morning.
Tom Smith was the only Lancs wicket to fall in the morning session when he was trapped lbw by Naqaash in the ninth over of the innings for five, leaving the score at 16-1. Lancashire went into lunch at 54-1.
Paul Horton and Mal Loye shared 65 for the second wicket before the former was well caught by Jim Troughton at mid-wicket off the bowling of Woakes for 43. The Lancashire opener hit six fours in his 81-ball stay at the crease.
Loye (29) was caught behind by Tim Ambrose off a quick and rising Boyd Rankin delivery before Laxman was caught at first slip by Jonathan Trott off Naqaash, despite the umpires having to discuss whether the catch was taken.
Chilton and du Plessis then shared their valuable fifth wicket partnership before the South African was the first of Botha’s four wickets when he swept down the throat of Naqaash at deep mid-wicket.
“Getting to a hundred was not my main aim, I was thinking of the points first,” continued du Plessis. “But I was still massively, massively disappointed with myself.”
Luke Sutton was caught at long-on by Jonathan Trott, Kyle Hogg was caught at first slip by Rikki Clarke and Chilton was also caught at long-on by Ian Westwood. Naqaash then bowled Sajid Mahmood and Oliver Newby to signal the end of the match. Lancashire take nine points in total from the fixture.
Coach Peter Moores says he will be fielding a strong side against Derbyshire in the Pro40 at Old Trafford tomorrow. Red Rose skipper Glen Chapple misses out with his left foot problem.
[Day 3 Report I Day 2 Report I Day 1 - no play, rain]
Photo: Simon Pendrigh
(c) Lancashire CCC Ltd