Notts Maintain Winning Start
After Sparkling Comeback
Match Report | 22nd April 2011
An astonishing fightback on the third day at Headingley brought Nottinghamshire an unlikely victory by 58 runs after Yorkshire were dismissed for just 86 second time around.
Three wickets apiece for Charlie Shreck, Luke Fletcher and Paul Franks, plus one for Samit Patel stunned the home crowd after the match had been extended thanks to a superb batting performance earlier in the day from Chris Read and Steven Mullaney.
Beginning the morning on 174-6, still 18 runs away from making the home side bat again, Notts were indebted to those two superb innings to get them up to a total of 337, setting Yorkshire 145 to win.
Read eventually fell for 86 and Mullaney 83 but their efforts weren’t in vain as the White Rose county stumbled spectacularly in the face of both scoreboard pressure and accurate Notts bowling.
"The partnership of Read and Mullaney was crucial and without that we were out of the game." Mick Newell
"The partnership of Read and Mullaney was crucial and without that we were out of the game," said Nottinghamshire Director of Cricket Mick Newell.
"Steven has been exceptional since he came from Lancashire and I thought Chris had an excellent match. He was tactically superb today with his field placings and bowling changes..
"Luke Fletcher getting Gale was vital because he is the lynchpin of their team and then at tea I sensed they were a little bit quiet, a litle bit nervous and I just wanted us to push home the initiative.
"Really, in terms of the situation this was even more astonishing than Old Trafford last September."
The day had begun with Read and Mullaney at the crease, on a slightly chillier morning, facing a monumental task in trying to regain the initiative for their side.
With three boundaries inside the first couple of overs they got off to an ideal start and soon wiped out the deficit. Although he began the session a dozen runs behind his captain Mullaney soon caught his partner up and led the chase to 50, bringing it up with a huge pull for six, off Pyrah.
Read reached the same milestone shortly afterwards with a crisp clip through midwicket off Sidebottom, which also brought up the century stand between the two.
Despite one or two ambitious lbw appeals and the occasional play and miss, both batsmen continued to lunch without too many alarms and reached the break on 278-6, an overall lead of 85.
Two moments of high drama christened the afternoon session. Mullaney appeared to be taken at slip by Lyth from a sharply-turning Rashid delivery but the umpire declared that it had gone cleanly to the fielder from a foot-mark.
Then Read edged Hannon-Dalby at the other end. Pyrah’s diving catch looked clean but after a lengthy discussion involving umpires and the fielders the Notts captain was invited to continue but the reprieve was only temporary.
Having put on 150 with Mullaney the Notts skipper pushed at one from Rashid and was given out lbw – the leg spinner getting one to go straight on and thud into the pads.
Andre Adams, still clearly handicapped by a slight groin strain, arrived in the middle with Adam Voges as his runner but he quickly fell in the same manner as Read – out for 0.
Rashid made it three consecutive leg before dismissals when he sent back Luke Fletcher for 4.
With only Charlie Shreck for company Mullaney decided to hit out in pursuit of quick runs but could only sky a Sidebottom delivery down to Rashid at long leg.
Disappointment was etched all over the right-handers face as he walked off 17 runs short his century but he had played an outstanding innings just when his side had most needed it.
Yorkshire’s victory target was 145 and they began in hot, sticky conditions at around 3.15pm. Five minutes later they had been reduced to 5-2 with Shreck trapping both Lyth and McGrath lbw with consecutive deliveries.
The hat-trick delivery was safely negotiated but Notts were soon celebrating again when Gale chopped on to his stumps to give Fletcher his 20th first class wicket already this season.
Both sides had the opportunity to re-group when tea was taken at 26-3 but Notts exerted more pressure with two more lbws afterwards.
Joe Root went in Franks’ first over and then Brophy completed a disappointing match by becoming Shreck’s third victim for 0.
Rashid struck Franks for a boundary but then perished to the next delivery, slapping the ball fiercely to substitute Michael Robson at point. When Pyrah edged behind off Franks the match was in the balance at 66-7.
Bairstow had guided Yorkshire to their win at Trent Bridge last season and looked to provide the difference during a tense last session but wickets continued to tumble at the other end.
The arrival of Patel into the attack reaped instant reward as Wainwright lobbed up to Hales at short leg and then Fletcher polished off the the last two.
Sidebottom went lbw and last man Hannon-Dalby was taken at slip by Patel to set off jubilant celebrations from the travelling contingent.
Chris Read drew plaudits from Mick Newell