The bears made a wonderful winning recovery after their humiliation on Monday when they were bowled out for 59 in the National League on this same track. The Championship leaders, their England players returned, again demonstrated their ineptitude at knock-out cricket. If Darren Gough hoped to recover credit in his homeland he would have driven away disappointed.
On Monday Chris Silverwood's opening overs were among the fastest and most destructive seen here since Fred Trueman's day. When Warwickshire heard that he was not playing, and that Mike Powell had won the toss, their spirits must have soared. Silverwood had a "slight twinge" but he made no mention of any injury in a 10-minute interview with BBC Radio Leeds on Tuesday. On that day the Yorkshire captain, David Byas, hinted that the team would be unchanged – "if it ain't broke don't mend it".
Yesterday Gough and Craig White, the England players were reinstated and neither justified his inclusion as the figures show. Gough did not bowl badly but once again failed to take a wicket, dropped a catch and it was his calling that was partly responsible for the run-outs of batting partners Byas and Ryan Sidebottom. Steve Kirby was selected and proved, as was suspected, that he does not have the control, yet, for one-day cricket.
Not that Warwickshire looked likely winners until late. They are a side lacking confidence, who bat and bowl almost with an air of desperation but this might just be the day that turns their season. They did show a better approach to the tactical timings of the one-day game. In Trevor Penney, who guided them home, they had the man of their match and they also proved to be a much superior fielding side.
On a classical Headingley morning, with heavy cloud over a greenish pitch, Powell rightly sent in the opposition for Dougie Brown, especially, and Neil Carter to make the new ball wobble through the air. Matthew Wood, playing the first of several injudicious strokes in the innings, was caught behind in the fourth over but although progress was slow it was not until Darren Lehmann was brilliantly caught by Keith Piper that the first doubts arose about the eventual result.
Nevertheless, with Anthony McGrath returning well after injury, Yorkshire were dominant at 173 for 5 with seven overs left. The crowd then watched in stricken silence as the last five wickets fell for 15 runs in 25 balls, an essay in incompetence that, had it been filmed, might have played to a guffawing packed house at Old Trafford.
Such is the public faith in Yorkshire's bowling now that the ringside pundits were still talking of the semi-final draw. A marvellous low catch at deep point removed Mark Wagh but the first four bowlers made little impact and it was Sidebottom who reduced Warwickshire to 63 for 4. Byas, unable to contain a steady drip, drip of runs, turned to his usually responsive all-rounder Gary Fellows. Penney, after gauging the pace, hit him for 12 off the 34th over to confirm that, for the first time, Yorkshire would not be in danger of losing their eighth one-day semi-final in 12 years.
Somerset v Warwickshire (at Taunton)
Leicestershire v Lancashire (at Leicester)
Matches to be played on 11 or 12 August.