James Anderson relished his return to familiar surroundings yesterday by producing his best display for Lancashire in nearly a year to put them in control of their County Championship Second Division match with Derbyshire.
Anderson, reduced to the role of net bowler during England's tour of South Africa this winter, when he played only one Test and a solitary warm-up match, took 4 for 62, his best haul since taking 10 wickets in the match during Lancashire's victory over Worcestershire at Old Trafford in May last year. His display helped dismiss Derbyshire, who won the toss and decided to bat, for just 215 and by the close of the first day Lancashire had strengthened their advantage by reaching 65 for 0.
Bowling from the Stretford End, Anderson produced a hostile performance which had Derbyshire's top order hopping around he also found better control than he had during Lancashire's victory at Worcester last week.
It was the former Derbyshire captain, Dominic Cork, who made the first breakthrough though, inducing Steve Stubbings into driving to Brad Hodge in the gully. Having left the county in acrimonious circumstances Cork celebrated with typical gusto.
Anderson then removed the off-stump of both Jonathan Moss and Hassan Adnan before Glen Chapple produced a fierce delivery which lifted and left Michael di Venuto. Anderson claimed his third wicket with Graeme Welch edging to slip to give Hodge, making his Lancashire debut, his second catch.
Derbyshire rallied after lunch with Ant Botha forging a 94-run stand with Luke Sutton. The pair frustrated Lancashire for 34 overs until Botha was beaten for pace by a full-length Anderson ball. Sutton ensured Derbyshire passed 200 despite the run-out of Andy Gray. That lesson was not heeded with Sutton, on 95, falling in similar manner attempting a quick run only to be beaten by rival captain Mark Chilton's throw.
Chilton and Mal Loye then shared an unbroken half-century partnership in the remaining 21 overs.Reuse content