Cricket: Leicestershire run into Wright

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The Independent Online
Gloucestershire 350-4 v Leicestershire

TONY WRIGHT's timing was impeccable - from a Warwickshire standpoint. Second-placed Leicestershire, needing every point to maintain pressure on the leaders, must have fancied their chances of a maximum 24 here because, while not a pushover, Gloucestershire have not been that difficult to beat either.

But Wright, who had not managed a first-class century for more than two years, chose Leicestershire as his victims yesterday and scored a career-best 184 not out. His seven-hour stint, during which he passed 1,000 runs for the fifth time, was not without an element of luck.

From the first ball, when David Millns bellowed for a leg before decision, fortune favoured Wright. It was Millns again, four overs later, who was convinced the former Gloucestershire captain, then on 11, had edged a catch behind. But Wright stayed. And stayed as two further appeals - one when the batsman was on 27, the next on 114 - were turned down.

Leicestershire's disappointment was registered by the apparent unwillingness of most of the side to share in Wright's joy at reaching the 13th first-class 100 of his career and ignoring the 150 which Wright brought up with a savage pull for four off Alamgir Sheriyar.

To add to the Leicestershire misery, Wright had been dropped four runs earlier when he mishooked the same bowler to Millns at fine leg.

There were occasional bright spots, though, on a generally overcast day for Nigel Briers' men to celebrate, especially during the opening 18 overs in which they sent back three batsmen relatively cheaply. But Leicestershire were not laughing by the close. Tim Hancock made an unbeaten 59 and, together with Wright, had helped put on 145 for the fifth wicket.