Pietersen duck delights locals but leaders are held up by weather

Nottinghamshire - Hampshire 222-7
Click to follow
The Independent Online

The revelation that Nottingham was founded by a Saxon chief named Snot has hardly smoothed sensibilities in a city already riled by Doncaster's impertinence in calling its airport "Robin Hood". Dander up, a target was needed. Who better than Kevin Pietersen?

England's newest South African, making his first appearance here since leaving for the Rose Bowl, walked in to a cold silence with Hampshire 41-2. He blocked the last ball of an over from Andrew Harris, watched John Crawley play out an over and then, to the first ball of Harris' next over, he was trapped boot in front by a late-swinging near-yorker. The jubilation didn't quite match Liverpool's in Istanbul but at least one Notts member resembled a whirling dervish. This was Pietersen's fourth duck in 10 championship innings this season.

New Zealand's Craig McMillan, with 52 on his debut, helped Crawley retrieve a bad start on a steamy, swinging day. Ryan Sidebottom was the unluckiest bowler, Harris the most successful, with 5-68.

Only 67 overs were allowed by the weather after Shane Warne had gambled on batting first. With further rain threatened over the next two days, Notts, the First Division leaders, must now hope to add to their one-point lead as best they can.