Cricket Round-Up: Bailey fails to bridge gap

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The Independent Online
TRY AS Rob Bailey did, it was a lost cause for Northamptonshire at Bristol yesterday. Not only did they fail to collect the victory that would have left them breathing down Essex's necks at the top of the County Championship table, they could not prevent Gloucestershire gaining their fifth win of the season.

Bailey reached the nineties (terminal, rather than nervous, for him in this match) for the second time in Northamptonshire's chase for 272 in 54 overs, but, again, back-up was backward in coming forward. A task of seven an over off the last 10 was always going to be a tall order for the last four wickets and left-armer Mark Davies duly applied the last rites. A case of what might have been for Northamptonshire.

More one of 'what happened?' at Chesterfield, where Matthew Maynard, the Glamorgan captain, suffered a hearty crack on the visor from Ian Bishop, the Derbyshire fast bowler, early in his innings. It felt 'like I've got a steel band playing inside my head', he said later, but he then composed a decent-sounding score of his own.

With Derbyshire pressing, Maynard shrugged off the discordant notes to punish a flagging attack on the way to 176, the highest score by a Glamorgan player against Derbyshire. While passing 1,000 runs, he hit 103 between lunch and tea, and even reduced Viv Richards to a supporting role in a partnership of 72.

Derbyshire were left an improbable 203 for victory in 20 overs and two wickets in Steve Watkin's first over was plenty to discourage any thoughts of shooting for the stars. Likewise, there were no heroics at Bournemouth and Weston-super-Mare. John Carr batted for nearly five hours for an unbeaten 77 to prevent Hampshire winning on their last visit to Dean Park, while Worcestershire gave up the chase for 254 in 62 overs against Somerset.