Cricket: Such six sends out a reminder

Click to follow
PETER SUCH, the Essex off-spinner, completed career-best match figures of 13 for 213 yesterday. However, his team still face an uphill struggle to deny Lancashire their second County Championship victory of the season at Old Trafford.

Such took six Lancashire second-innings wickets for 77 and send a reminder to the England selectors, who left him out of the Test team to play New Zealand despite his five-wicket performance in the fifth Ashes Test in Sydney last winter.

However, the Lancashire captain, John Crawley, was still able to declare on 209 for 7 to set Essex a target of 301.

Persistent rain prevented any play until 3pm and when Lancashire did resume their second innings on 81 for 1, with a lead of 172, Such quickly got to work. The 35-year-old had Neil Fairbrother caught at slip after adding only five to his overnight score of 35, then had Andy Flintoff caught at mid-off for a sixth-ball duck.

Graham Lloyd top-edged a reverse sweep to point before Mike Watkinson holed out to long-on to give Such the first five wickets before Paul Grayson had Crawley caught behind for 64 - his second fifty of the match. That left Lancashire on 146 for 6, 237 ahead. But Ian Austin, Warren Hegg and Peter Martin added 63 for the loss of only one more wicket, allowing their bowlers to have 12 overs at Essex's openers.

Gary Keedy, the left-arm spinner, opened the bowling with Martin and Muttiah Muralitharan came on for the sixth over, and although Darren Robinson and Grayson both played well to finish on 33 without loss, Lancashire remain favourites to win.

Vikram Solanki underlined his potential with a polished 126 to bring Worcestershire back into their Championship contest against Northamptonshire at Northampton yesterday.

The 23-year-old, who toured Zimbabwe and South Africa with the England A team last winter, hit a six and 22 fours during his 202 ball stay. His effort boosted Worcestershire, in deep trouble at 47 for 4, to 361 for 8 when bad light halted play with 11 overs remaining - a lead of 266 with two wickets in hand.

Robin Weston fired an unbeaten century to ensure a healthy Derbyshire lead after two days of their Championship match with Middlesex at Lord's. Despite the day being constantly interrupted by rain Derbyshire established a 101-run overnight lead.

Glamorgan are to keep the injured South African Jacques Kallis instead of seeking a replacement as their overseas player for this season, they announced yesterday. The all-rounder is recovering well from a stomach muscle injury.