It’s shorts weather for the second day running at Headingley, a far cry from the snow which greeted us eight weeks ago today when Yorkshire faced Glamorgan in the season opener. I think I wore three jumpers that day and two coats – sat inside!
Tanya, I seem to remember, even went out at lunch and took orders for hot water bottles from the local B&M Bargains or Poundland. Anyway, I apologise for the early digression.
Here, yesterday, was a day to long remember as Sussex’s debutant Dan Ibrahim became the youngest player to score a fifty in Championship history, aged 16 and 299 days. He looked the real deal in front of a near-2,000 crowd. His composure really stood out before he struck with his medium pacers as Yorkshire slipped to 95-2 in reply to 313.
Unfortunately, things got much harder for the young buck and his mates as Dawid Malan and Gary Ballance shared an unbroken 177 and will resume this morning looking to put a young attack on the ropes from 272-2. Malan (103) brought up a serene century in the final over the day and Ballance has 74.
If Yorkshire can complete victory, it is likely to put them back within a handful of points of Group Three leaders Lancashire, who are on course for defeat in a quite remarkable game at Glamorgan.
On what Alex Davies has described as a “substandard” pitch, Glamorgan are 137-3 needing 50 more to win with Marnus Labuschagne unbeaten on 32. The only remaining unbeaten record in county cricket this summer looks set to disappear. Mind you, get Marnus out immediately this morning and it could be different.
Given the weather up North, I was absolutely staggered to see no play in the Test at Lord’s and also at Canterbury and Chelmsford in the Championship yesterday. When play does resume, Northamptonshire will be 362-5 against Kent in the other Group Three fixture and Notts will be 248-6 against Essex in the Group One top-of-the-table clash.
Worcestershire have it all to do in Group One at New Road against an emerging Durham; 151 behind with seven wickets remaining and Jake Libby 51 not out.
Likewise for Derbyshire at the County Ground against Warwickshire. The Bears, at 132-7 in their second innings, lead by 285. Derby will have to post the highest score of the match to claim victory.
In Group Two at Taunton, it’s relatively even between Somerset (360) and Hampshire (285-7). I’d just rather be Somerset, but Hampshire have Lewis McManus unbeaten on 91 chasing his second career hundred.
Gloucestershire’s popular and profitable start to the season is in danger of coming to a juddering halt. Beaten by Surrey last week, they are on course for a second away defeat at Leicestershire. They are 5-1 second time around, trailing by 281 with Leicestershire still to bat again.
Elsewhere, there are a trio of Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy games taking place. I will have a keen eye on the Northern Diamonds game against Sunrisers at Fenner’s. I covered the Diamonds’ win against Lightning at Kibworth on Monday, a low-scoring thriller. I didn’t have much faith in the sunny forecast, didn’t bother with suncream and came away looking like Jerry the Berry from Phoenix Nights. Eek!
All the England players, Katherine Brunt, Nat Sciver, etc are available once more before reporting for Test duty before facing India at Bristol on 16 June. South East Stars also face Western Storm at the Oval, and it is Southern Vipers versus Central Sparks at Hove in a clash between the only two unbeaten teams so far.