Schofield's spin suits Lancashire

Some talk of Shane Warne, yes, but what about Chris Schofield? The English leg-spinner, dignified at 21 with an England Cricket Board contract, took an impressive 3 for 33 in his 10 overs on a damp, slowish pitch on which the seamers should have carried all before them. The perceived wisdom has been that our pitches are neither hard enough nor quick enough to suit his style and that if Warne does succeed with Hampshire it will be because he is a genius to whom mortal rules do not apply.

Schofield might just dispute all that. He is a very risky spinner, winning turn where others are rendered harmless. Lancashire are to be commended for having the courage to play him in the current climate - it was his cup debut - and John Crawley takes credit for giving him his full stint; a spinner who concedes two fours in an over usually takes his sweater.

Lancashire made heavy weather of their qualification, as they relied on their last pair, Ian Austin and Mike Smethurst, to survive nine overs to edge them to victory with nine balls to spare. As at Headingley, Lancashire's old virtues of application and accuracy were seen fleetingly yet they began well enough, reducing Leicestershire to 56 for 3 in 17 overs before Schofield appeared.

After that only Ben Smith, 64 not out off 91 balls, played him with confidence in a disappointing team innings that was revived only by some deserved punishment of loose Lancashire bowling in the closing overs. Lancashire's batting, beginning with Atherton, Crawley and Ganguly, lifted the game by a whole class and at 69 for 1 off 17 overs the contest seemed finished.

Anil Kumble is also a leg-spinner but of a totally different type, turning mostly off strong fingers and thus exercising greater control of length and variations. Sourav Ganguly was dismissed by a dazzling gully catch, Andrew Flintoff was stumped, grotesquely, before Michael Atherton, looking on fine form, had his stumps scattered by James Ormond. Then Graham Lloyd and Warren Hegg were dispatched with successive balls in Kumble's third over and Lancashire's cruise to victory was suddenly not so comfortable.

Chris Lewis, barracked when he came in to bat and when he took the ball - a constant reminder that he will have to put up or shut up to regain pavilion favour - won significant lbw decisions and at 148 for 9 there were foxy grins. But Kumble's stint was over and Austin, who has seen it all before, and done it all before, did it again.

Sport
sportSo, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
Arts and Entertainment
Dennis speaks to his French teacher
tvThe Boy in the Dress, TV review
News
One father who couldn't get One Direction tickets for his daughters phoned in a fake bomb threat and served eight months in a federal prison
people... (and one very unlucky giraffe)
Arts and Entertainment
Joel Edgerton, John Turturro and Christian Bale in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
The Plaza Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia was one of the 300 US cinemas screening
filmTim Walker settles down to watch the controversial gross-out satire
Arts and Entertainment
Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz in Tim Burton's Big Eyes
film reviewThis is Tim Burton’s most intimate and subtle film for a decade
Life and Style
Mark's crab tarts are just the right size
food + drinkMark Hix cooks up some snacks that pack a punch
Arts and Entertainment
Jack O'Connell stars as Louis Zamperini in Angelina Jolie's Unbroken
film review... even if Jack O'Connell is excellent
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

Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that? The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year

Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that?

The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year
Hollande's vanity project is on a high-speed track to the middle of nowhere

Vanity project on a high-speed track to nowhere

France’s TGV network has become mired in controversy
Sports Quiz of the Year

Sports Quiz of the Year

So, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry, his love of 'Bargain Hunt', and life as a llama farmer

Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry and his love of 'Bargain Hunt'

From Armstrong and Miller to Pointless
Sanchez helps Gunners hold on after Giroud's moment of madness

Sanchez helps Gunners hold on

Olivier Giroud's moment of madness nearly costs them
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect