Mullally rips through Warwickshire

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The Independent Online

The Leicestershire left-armer Alan Mullally produced a devastating spell of 5 for 15 in eight overs to send Warwickshire crashing to another defeat at Edgbaston, this time in the AXA Equity & Law League.

After dismissing the visitors for only 148, last year's double winners were looking good to put some recent disappointments behind them. But they were shot out for just 95 and lost on run rate after being set a revised target of 134 in 36 overs.

With the ball bouncing and seaming alarmingly after a heavy shower, half the side went for 31 before Mullally completed his spell and the lower order toiled without success against Phil Simmons (2 for 20) and Vince Wells (2 for 27).

Wicketkeeper Paul Nixon held five catches, four of them off Mullally and Shaun Pollock, who declared himself fit to play despite five stitches in a cut knee, was top scorer with 19.

The conditions had been slightly easier for Leicestershire's batsmen but they were never comfortable against Warwickshire's seamers. Gladstone Small and Dermot Reeve each claimed three wickets and there were two for left-arm spinner Ashley Giles. Leicestershire were ultimately guided to what proved to be a useful score by Darren Maddy with 55 off 62 balls.

The Bicknell brothers swept Surrey to four Sunday league points after a 72-run victory at Gloucestershire in a match reduced to a crash-bang 15 overs each.

First Darren hit 51 in 40 balls with six fours before an attempted reverse sweep found him departing leg-before. Then, opening the attack, his younger brother Martin took two wickets in the first over as Gloucestershire attempted to chase Surrey's score of 138 for 5.

Bobby Dawson was caught at the wicket off his third ball and with the next delivery the dangerous Andrew Symonds was dismissed with a brilliant diving catch by Nadeem Shahid at extra cover. As wickets tumbled only Tony Wright with 29 offered much resistance as Gloucestershire were bowled out for just 66 in the 13th over.

When Surrey had batted Courtney Walsh had the unique experience of being hammered for 51 off his three overs. These included a six off a no ball which flew high over wicketkeeper Jack Russell into the boundary fence.

Middlesex's season of misery took another dismal turn on Saturday when they were comprehensively beaten in the County Championship by Sussex after being dismissed for a paltry 85.

After both sides forfeited an innings to get a result, Middlesex, already shunted out of the Benson and Hedges Cup, lost openers Paul Weekes and Jason Pooley for 17 before lunch.

But that was nothing compared to the carnage that followed as Middlesex were shot out 35 minutes before tea with only Keith Brown (28) and Mark Ramprakash (24) managing to reach double figures

Paul Jarvis, Danny Law and Ed Giddins took three wickets apiece in Sussex's best bowling display since dismissing Leicestershire for 90 in 1994.

The defending champions, Warwickshire, were also finding life difficult in the four-day game, with Phil Simmons' first Championship hundred for two years putting Leicestershire in a strong position at Edgbaston.

The West Indian batsman compiled a century of contrasting styles as Leicestershire reached 288 for 6, a first-innings lead to date of 124. Warwickshire, who started the day on 138 for 6, lost their last four wickets for 10 runs in the space of seven overs as they were dismissed for 164 - their lowest Championship score since August 1993.

Yorkshire, one point behind Leicestershire before the current round of matches, gained a first-innings lead as Craig White polished off Kent's lower-order with a burst of 3 for 0 in 11 balls

Trevor Ward almost single-handedly kept Kent in the match, guiding them to 299 all out - 51 runs behind Yorkshire, who finished the day on 29 for one for an overall lead of 80.

Ward produced a chanceless innings of 161, including 112 in fours, before he was comprehensively bowled by White.

The Worcestershire skipper, Tom Moody, threw down the gauntlet to Glamorgan by declaring 128 runs behind after his openers Tim Curtis and Philip Weston made an unbeaten stand of 200 at Abergavenny.

Weston made a career-best 121 not out, including 19 fours, while his partner supported well with an unbeaten 62. This came after Glamorgan had taken their total of 148 for 5 in a rain-hit first innings, over two days, to 328 all out. Worcestershire then had six overs to attack Glamorgan again and they claimed the wicket of Hugh Morris.