Durham clear drop zone as Notts title hopes suffer

Durham 194 & 325-8 Nottinghamshire 154 & 349 (Durham win by 16 runs)

trent bridge

Nottinghamshire's chances of capturing the County Championship for the second time in three years took a backward step as they were beaten by 16 runs by Durham in a gripping contest that went down to the penultimate over. The all-rounder Mark Wood took 5 for 78.

It is a first defeat of the 2012 season for Chris Read's team but leaves them 18 points behind leaders Warwickshire, who have four matches left to their three.

There may yet be a twist or two before the season ends on 14 September, with Nottinghamshire and Warwickshire still to meet twice. But there was a feeling in the Trent Bridge dressing room before this match that it was one they needed to win. The denouement of this match turned from what looked for a while as though it might be a stroll for the home side to a battle between batsmen and bowlers after Durham finally found a way to part Nottinghamshire's openers, Riki Wessels and Alex Hales.

With the pitch flattening out compared in particular with the second day, when England's Graham Onions arrived from being stood down at Lord's to take 9 for 67, Wessels and Hales put on 168 in 42.1 overs with no one, Onions included, able to trouble either man unduly until Wessels, within two runs of a third century of the season, steered a ball from Chris Rushworth into the hands of one of two gullies. At that point, a target of 366 in 90 overs looked well within Nottinghamshire's scope, even though it would have been the fourth highest total they had chased down for victory in their history.

But then Michael Lumb top edged a sweep off Scott Borthwick, the leg spinner, to be caught at short fine leg and Adam Voges was caught behind for two as Onions at last found a bit of swing. Hales completed his first century of the season but was leg before soon afterwards to a full length ball from Mark Wood, who then dealt Nottinghamshire another blow when he bowled Read.

Nottinghamshire needed exactly 100 from the last 25 overs, with five wickets in hand, and kept looking for opportunities, with little to be gained from a draw. But Durham kept chipping away in search of wickets, knowing that a third win off the reel since Paul Collingwood took over the captaincy would see them clear of the relegation places after a long time bottom of the table. Borthwick accounted for both Paul Franks and Graeme White in quick succession and Nottinghamshire felt the loss of James Taylor and Samit Patel, taken from them by international calls.

Collingwood turned down the chance to take the new ball, Steven Mullaney kept Nottinghamshire's hopes alive with an unbeaten 60 and when Ben Phillips took three boundaries in a row off Borthwick the home side sensed they could steal victory, needing 42 off as many balls.

But then Phillips pulled Wood straight to midwicket and the all-rounder Wood completed the job. He bowled Luke Fletcher twice –once off a no-ball, then with a legitimate one next delivery – and then trapped Andy Carter in front, finishing with a career-best return as Durham won with just eight balls to spare.

News
Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft and co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
businessUber, Snapchat and Facebook founders among those on the 2015 Forbes Billionaire List
News
news... and what your reaction to the creatures above says about you
News
Homer’s equation, in an episode in 1998, comes close to the truth, as revealed 14 years later
science
News
news
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003