Three-wicket star Kyle Hogg has revealed he did not expect to take the new ball against Kent this morning, but was happy to not let the side down after helping Lancashire close day one in pole position at Emirates Old Trafford.
Hogg retained his place in the Red Rose line-up despite Jimmy Anderson’s return to LV= County Championship action, and his 3-32 from 20 overs represented the pick of the figures as the Canterbury side closed on 216-8 from 96 overs.
The 29-year-old and his team-mates may have been frustrated during an attritional opening two sessions, but they were rewarded either side of tea as their Division Two rivals slipped from 130-2 having elected to bat first.
“We are in the box seat now,” said Hogg, who was preferred in the line-up to new signing Wayne White and took the new cherry ahead of Glen Chapple. “It is a good wicket, but we stuck to it all day and built pressure. They batted well for the first session, but we got our rewards in the last session.
“Having Jimmy back is a big boost. Everyone stuck to the game plan and put them under pressure all day.
“It was obvious it was going to be me or Wayne, and I was lucky we had that friendly against Yorkshire last week because I batted and bowled well there. If Wayne had played this game instead of me, he would definitely had done as good as job as anybody out there.
“I didn’t expect to take the new ball. I thought I would be bowling after about an hour, and then Chappie tells me I am bowling with Jimmy!Chappie’s record speaks for itself, as does Jimmy’s, and it puts you under a bit of pressure when you are bowling with those two. You feel like you don’t want to let the side down.”
Two of Hogg’s three wickets came courtesy of successful lbw appeals. Sam Northeast and Rob Key fell to leave the score at 60-2 shortly after lunch before later getting Darren Stevens caught behind one-handed by Gareth Cross.
Kent had reached 130-2 in the 63rd over, the penultimate before the tea break, and there is no doubt that Lancashire will bowl worse than this and get more rewards quicker at some point during their 2013 campaign.
But Hogg, Steven Croft, Simon Kerrigan, Chapple and Anderson twice all struck to leave Kent in bother. West Indian overseas batsman Brendan Nash and former Glamorgan batsman Mike Powell scored 50 and 57 respectively, although the latter was dropped on seven in the gully by Ashwell Prince off Chapple.
Croft trapped Nash lbw to leave Kent three down before Kerrigan removed Daniel Bell-Drummond the same way.
Chapple bowled former England wicketkeeper Geraint Jones before Anderson ended Powell’s resistance with the second new ball by bowling him to leave the score at 185-7 in the 87th. The England man left Kent eight down when Matt Coles found Kerrigan at deep backward square-leg.
Anderson finished with 2-48 from 23 overs, and Hogg added: “It is brilliant to have Jimmy back. It is the same as when Freddie used to play for us. It gives us all a lift because you want your best players playing in your team. It was a good day all round.”
Photo (c) Simon Pendrigh