Cricket: Fletcher stretched

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The Independent Online
GLAMORGAN WILL be relieved their talismanic coach, Duncan Fletcher, is staying on the Welsh side of the border until the end of the season. The Zimbabwean may have a taken on a tough job as the newly appointed England coach but he still has plenty of work to do before he joins the national set-up in October.

Hampshire won by an innings and six runs at Swansea yesterday, needing less than 20 overs to take the four wickets they required. Both sides went into the match on the back of two losses and two draws, but while Glamorgan sunk further towards the bottom of the PPP healthcare County Champion-ship, Robin Smith's Hampshire took the chance to rise into second place behind Surrey after Warwickshire had lost to Kent.

The Glamorgan captain, Matthew Maynard, has sung the praises of Fletcher, who brought their first title in 28 years in 1997, his first season in charge, with a blend of discipline and attention to detail. Maynard told his side they must now get "back to basics" to avoid finding themselves in the Championship's new second division next year.

"If the basics are right, the rest will follow," said Maynard, who had been tipped as a dark horse for the England captaincy. "We have to address that problem immediately. But it is important we don't put too much pressure on ourselves. We will discuss our individual roles in the team.

"A big difference in this match was that Hampshire were al-ways expecting to take wickets and score runs, which is what happens when things are going well for you. When they are not, as with us at the moment, it becomes increasingly difficult."

The victory heralded a welcome return to form for the former international off-spinner Shaun Udal, who took three of the remaining four wickets to finish with 6 for 47 - his best figures in three seasons.

Glamorgan resumed on 102 for 6, needing 81 runs to make Hampshire bat again, but in the fourth over Ismail Dawood was caught at short leg. A defiant, 57-run stand in nine overs by Darren Thomas, who made 36 off 34 balls, and Dean Cosker was ended when Thomas tried to hook the West Indian paceman Nixon McLean for a second six. Simon Jones top-edged Udal to point and Cosker played on.

Derbyshire recorded their first win at Lord's since 1961 with a nine- wicket victory over Middlesex. The hosts resumed on 221 for 9 but the seamer Kevin Dean bowled Tim Bloomfield with the fourth ball of the day, leaving a target of 66. The acting captain, Michael Slater, was caught down the leg side off Cook but Adrian Rollins and Stephen Titchard completed the formalities in just 15.2 overs.