Warwickshire 248 &amp; 187-3 Nottinghamshire 157 <i>(Match abandoned at 73 mins)</i>: Alleyne escapes shadows to rescue Nottinghamshire

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The Independent Online

If Chris Read's career has been blighted thus far by England's preference for Geraint Jones to keep wicket, then David Alleyne can be said to have suffered collateral damage.

The former Middlesex wicketkeeper joined Nottinghamshire in 2004 on the assumption that Read's appearances for his county would be infrequent. Then England dropped Read, forcing Alleyne back into the role of understudy, which he had occupied behind David Nash at Lord's.

Thus Alleyne is appearing in only his seventh first-class match for Nottinghamshire, stepping up because Read is playing for England A at Worcester. So far it is proving quite memorable. Having held five catches in Warwickshire's first innings, yesterday he recorded his maiden half-century, at the age of 30.

It was just as well for the champions that he did. In bowling out Warwickshire for 248 when Ryan Sidebottom removed Moeen Ali with the fifth ball of the morning, they thought they had done well enough. But then their own first innings collapsed to 36 for 6 in the face of some fine swing bowling. Thanks to Alleyne and Paul Franks (38) adding 67 for the seventh wicket, Nottinghamshire dodged the follow-on.

Alleyne then allowed himself a few liberties, smacking Ali into the sightscreen and striking a similar blow against Dougie Brown before an attempt to do likewise to James Anyon proved his downfall.

Yet Nottinghamshire conceded a lead of 91, which Warwickshire had extended to 278 by the close after Jonathan Trott (84) and, encouragingly, England's Ian Bell (72 not out) put on 148 for the third wicket.

Earlier, with Tim Ambrose out with a broken thumb, Warwickshire had a scare when their stand-in wicketkeeper, Tony Frost, had to leave the field but the hand injury he suffered was diagnosed as only bruising.

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