Wells compounds Yorkshire's woes

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The Independent Online

Leicestershire 351 v Yorkshire

Leicestershire 351 v Yorkshire

18 August 2000

Not much has gone according to plan here and there were more twists to the plot yesterday, not least when Leicestershire's captain Vince Wells undermined Yorkshire by taking three wickets without cost in his first four overs.

There is a school of thought locally that Wells tends to under bowl himself and maybe enters the attack too late, when the ball has lost its hardness and shine. He did nothing to dispel that when he came on after 11 overs. On this pitch Yorkshire ought not to have been overawed by Leicestershire's total of 351; the comfort with which Neil Burns and Karl Crowe added 61 for the ninth wicket should have convinced them that all things were possible.

However, there were four uncapped batsmen in their top five. There was also an absence of footwork which played into the hands of Wells and his accurate, medium-paced outswing.

He quickly had Victor Craven and Anthony McGrath picked up at slip by Ben Smith. Matthew Wood was then caught on the crease and palpably lbw to a straight one and Yorkshire were 24 for 3 on as good a batting surface as they will have encountered all season.

Worse still, their acting captain Darren Lehmann was unable to bat at that stage because of an injured back. He was in some discomfort when he appeared at 123 for 5 after Gary Fellows and Simon Widdup had departed.

Throughout all this Gavin Hamilton batted with aplomb, reaching 50 from 97 balls. Bad back or not, Lehmann dealt severely with anything off-line and reached his fifty from only 66 balls with nine fours, a heroic effort under the circumstances.