Cricket: Lehmann feasts on woeful Warwickshire

Warwickshire 234 Yorkshire 237-5 Yorkshire win by five wickets
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The departure of Dermot Reeve from Edgbaston can never have been more sharply underlined than it was yesterday when Yorkshire were allowed to make almost unimpeded progress to a likely place in the quarter-finals of the Benson and Hedges Cup.

In case this seems ungenerous to Yorkshire, it must be said that through Darren Lehmann and Michael Vaughan they made the most of the chances they were given. Lehmann's blustering strokeplay showed the way while Vaughan's adhesiveness made sure there was no slip-up.

But Warwickshire were awful, even allowing for the biting wind which blew round Edgbaston and for the fact that the ball did not swing as it had on Monday. The bowling was all over the place, the fielding was untidy, the catching bad and had Reeve been in charge, smoke would have been coming out of his ears.

Warwickshire's cricket was never as ill-disciplined under his captaincy and now there seemed to be precious little cohesion to the side. They were given an excellent start to the day, too, when David Byas was bowled by Dougie Brown, choosing the wrong ball to pull in the morning's second over.

Lehmann, looking a little bit like a left-handed Billy Bunter, had hardly taken guard before he was thumping the ball to the boundary. He has a good array of strokes and an uncomplicated and forthright method which brought him 67 runs in 65 balls with eight fours and one six.

At the start, after Allan Donald's first three overs had been safely negotiated, Lehmann and Vaughan turned their attention to Gladstone Small and Ashley Giles. Small's first over included three wides and his spell of four overs cost 26 runs. At the pavilion end, Giles, like many left- arm spinners down the years, found it difficult to bowl to a fellow left- hander.

Giles was unlucky, however, in that he had Lehmann dropped at long on by Graeme Welch when 40 and again when 51. Then, when Donald returned, Lehmann square drove for four, sliced over third man for six and cut for four in his expensive second over before Giles was finally rewarded when Brown held another steepling drive behind the bowler.

Vaughan was sensibly content to allow Lehmann to have his head. None the less, he cut and drove especially well when he had the chance before being bowled through a walking forward stroke against one which Neil Smith had held back. By then, Peter Hartley and Anthony McGrath had made pleasant contributions and only seven more were needed.