County Championship round-up: Salisbury turns on style to put Bears up
Sunday 21 September 2008
The sleeping Bears have awoken. Or at least, at the first time of asking under Ashley Giles, Warwickshire have shaken themselves from their self-inflicted torpor.
Having gone down from Division One last year, they ensured an immediate return yesterday by inflicting a six-wicket defeat on Essex. Both promotion spots are now decided and with Worcestershire also going up it also means both the clubs relegated in 2007 are returning.
It may or may not say something about the gap appearing in standards, though since both promoted clubs, Nottinghamshire and Somerset, are vying for the Championship itself the jury may have to be out for some time. Warwickshire were propelled to victory by the veteran leg spinner Ian Salisbury, who took six for 46 in reducing Essex from 247 for one to 316 all out. The removal of Ravi Bopara for 133 prompted the collapse and Warwickshire accumulated the runs artfully in their victory. Salisbury has taken 31 wickets this summer, with five wickets in an innings five times.
Tony Frost, scorer of 242 not out in the first innings, was there at the end with 38. It is at least arguable that he has been Giles' wisest signing, pulled out of retirement at 32 (from Warwickshire's ground staff) to act as wicketkeeping cover for Tim Ambrose and then twice surpassing his previous career-best score. Perhaps Frost felt that he had nothing to lose and that the mowers and rollers would still be there waiting for him. His two innings in the penultimate match have taken his Championship batting average to 91.8.
At the bottom, Derbyshire came from behind to inflict on Gloucestershire their fifth defeat. Graham Wagg took 4 for 77 to add to his first innings 6 for 56, the first 10-wicket match return of his career.
All Gloucestershire can do is wait for the return of John Bracewell as coach next summer. The legacy he hoped to leave after his first spell in the job has been largely dissipated and although he made them into a one-day force rather than Championship force they have been in disarray on all fronts. If Bracewell thought coaching New Zealand at international level was a perpetual challenge he will be well aware that coaching Gloucestershire is the domestic equivalent.
In the other bottom of the table clash, Glamorgan beat Leicestershire whose season has been in gradual decline. They took the match to a fourth innings thanks to Paul Nixon's first century of the season, the 19th of his career. Nixon will be 38 next month.
In the First Division, Durham and Sussex padded gently to a gentlemanly draw. Durham finished on 125 for two and Sussex were all out in the morning and are still not certain to avoid the drop. Jason Lewry, their admirable 37-year-old swinger, bowled nine overs, removing young Ben Harmison but he will have kept something in reserve for this week. Perhaps the Coen Brothers could make a film about the eccentricities of the Championship but it might not be called No Country For Old Men.
Mario Balotelli scored as many goals for AC Milan on second debut as he did for Liverpool in the Premier League last season
Cyprus vs Wales match report: Gareth Bale's bullet header has Welsh on brink of Euro 2016
Jose Mourinho: Chelsea manager has four Guinness World records hanging in his office
Manchester United will pay Monaco £7.2m extra if Anthony Martial scores 25 goals in four years as deal could rise to incredible £58m
Pedro hits outs at Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal for treatment of Victor Valdes
- 1 What marriage would look like if we actually followed the Bible
- 3 The Chinese city where men have 'three girlfriends because there are so many women'
- 4 'Heartbreaking' Syria orphan photo wasn't taken in Syria and not of orphan
- 5 Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Britain to take more refugees as Cameron bows to pressure after more than 250,000 back our campaign
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Make your voice heard: Sign The Independent's petition to welcome refugees