James Taylor, Adam Voges and Chris Read all played significant roles in denying Lancashire victory in their drawn LV= County Championship match against Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge today, which ended with an exciting contrived run chase
Captains Glen Chapple and Read had got their heads together before play this morning to set up a scenario in which Notts needed 351 from a minimum of 90 overs after two forfeitures of innings, the host’s first and Lancashire’s second.
Play started with Kyle Hogg and Simon Kerrigan, who finished 61 not out and 34 not out respectively, taking their last wicket partnership to 99 with the help of some declaration bowling from Taylor and Michael Lumb. The pair batted for 4.1 overs to add another 29 runs, which also secured Lancashire’s fourth batting bonus point and Hogg’s highest score since August 2010.
Lancashire then made a fine start to their pursuit of ten wickets as two for Chapple and one each for Hogg and Kerrigan reduced the hosts to 95-4 in 27th over of the innings shortly after lunch. But Taylor and Voges steadied the ship for the Division One leaders with a fifth-wicket stand of 99, even getting them into a position at tea where all three results were possible going into the final 32 overs of the rain-affected contest.
Notts went into the break at 177-4 from from 58 overs, still needing 174 from 32. Voges fell shortly after the break when he was stumped by Gareth Cross off Kerrigan for 55, leaving the score at 194-5, to further set his side’s chances back and give the Red Rose a boost. But Taylor and Read added 61 for the sixth wicket to again frustrate Lancashire.
Ajmal Shahzad struck twice in two balls in the 76th over, trapping Taylor lbw for an innings top-score of 67 and getting Andre Adams superbly caught at long-off by Chapple for a golden duck, to leave the score at 255-7 with 14 overs left.
But Read, who finished unbeaten on 56, and Paul Franks survived the last 55 minutes of play, which also included the best part of ten overs against the second new ball.
Notts finished on 293-7 from 89.4 overs as Read got the benefit of the doubt from umpire Jeff Evans in the 88th over from Kerrigan when Lancashire were convinced he had edged to Steven Croft at gully.
Lancashire, whose next Championship match is against Surrey at Guildford on July 11, take seven points to Notts’ six.
Red Rose coach Peter Moores said: “Credit to both sides for setting it up. It was made for setting up in some ways. It was a good wicket. They were 50 or 60 short, but at no stage did they have to push the button.
“On another day we might have got a few more wickets and got home. They’ve got a very strong middle order in Taylor, Voges and Read, and they played well. We put a lot of balls in the right area, but they played well.”
Chapple struck after just four balls when he had Alex Hales caught behind by Cross to leave the score at 1-1 before Hogg trapped Riki Wessels, the other opener, lbw in the 12th with 23 on the board.
Lumb and Samit Patel got their side going with an immediate counter-attack. They scored 62 runs in the nine overs between the end of the 13th and end of the 22nd over before the latter fell just before lunch thanks to Kerrigan.
Brought in to the attack from the Pavilion End, the left-arm spinner struck with his fifth ball when he forced Patel to edge to first slip, where Paul Horton held the catch as he tumbled away to his right to leave the score at 87-3 in the 24th.
And when Lumb was trapped lbw by Chapple in the opening stages of the afternoon session, Notts were four down and still five away from three figures. Lancs were in the box seat. But, in the end, it just was not be at the end of an enthralling final day.
Reports: Day 1 I Day 2 I Day 3
Photo (c) Simon Pendrigh
Article (c) Lancashire CCC Ltd