Flintoff caught cold by Ali strike as Worcestershire take command
Lancashire 196Worcestershire 59-1
Thursday 28 April 2005
At a time when counties are being encouraged to work together for the good of a common cause, namely the England team, Worcestershire were yesterday guilty of acting in a rather uncharitable manner.
At a time when counties are being encouraged to work together for the good of a common cause, namely the England team, Worcestershire were yesterday guilty of acting in a rather uncharitable manner. When Lancashire's Stuart Law was caught down the leg-side by the wicketkeeper, Jamie Pipe, the stage was set for Worcestershire to play their part in helping Andrew Flintoff find the form which could help England regain the Ashes.
But Kabir Ali and Graeme Hick, present and former England team-mates of Flintoff, had other ideas. Ali, the Worcestershire fast bowler, would love to be playing for England with the Lancashire all-rounder during the summer, and he did his chances no harm when he dismissed the 27-year-old before he had troubled the scorers.
Matt Mason was the pick of Worcestershire's attack but it was Ali who kick-started the home side's recovery when dismissing Law, Flintoff and Malachy Loye in a six-over spell. At one stage it looked as though Lancashire would struggle to reach 150, but a 66-run partnership between Warren Hegg and James Anderson gave the visitors an air of respectability. Hegg's fifty came off 39 balls.
On a slow seaming pitch, Lancashire's 196 could be competitive, especially if the visitors bowl as wisely as their opponents. And Dominic Cork gave Lancashire the perfect start when he trapped Stephen Moore for nought in the second over of Worcestershire's reply, but this proved to be their only success.
Hick was dropped by Mark Chilton at third slip on 15 and by the close he looked ominous on 32. Lancashire will need to get rid of him early today if they want to stay in the contest.
Ali found the outside edge of Flintoff's bat with a delivery he could do little about. Flintoff's uncontrolled push flew to Hick at second slip.
"I was probably a little eager and went after one I could have left," Flintoff said. "But the ankle felt fine. I don't know when I will be back bowling again, it's very much day to day at the moment."
Lancashire's openers looked in little trouble against the new ball. But with the first ball after lunch, Chaminda Vaas bowled Iain Sutcliffe. Vaas took two further wickets before Mason cleaned up the tail.
The muddy truth of the Christmas Truce game
Premier League: Burnley vs Liverpool match preview
Alexis Sanchez video: Turns out the Arsenal forward is brilliant at playing the piano too
Premier League: Chelsea vs West Ham match preview
Sir Alex Ferguson on Jose Mourinho: 'He's good looking, speaks five languages, wins everything - it's unfair'
- 1 Planes go hybrid-electric in important step to greener flight
- 2 Antonio Martin shooting: Mayor says there should be 'no comparison' to Ferguson
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'