2016 Season Review | May


Worcestershire v Essex | Specsavers County Championship 

Alastair Cook and Tom Westley continued their excellent form against Worcestershire scoring 142 and 125 respectively as Essex posted a total of 451 for 9 declared. Ravi Bopara contributed 48 while James Foster score another quickfire 51 down the order.

Unfortunately for Essex, the wickets of Worcestershire were equally as hard to come by with Brett D’Oliveira scoring an excellent 128 and Tom Kohler-Cadmore contributing with 119 not out as the visitors scored 411 for 8 declared. Napier took four wickets and Jamie Porter and David Masters took two wickets apiece.

Worcestershire thoroughly took the sting out of the game and put both sides in a position where a draw was inevitable. Essex eventually batted again and closed on 95-2 as the stumps were pulled up.

Essex v Sri Lanka | Tour Match

Sri Lanka travelled to Chelmsford in preparation for their upcoming tour with England. Essex gave opportunities to a number of young players and it was Aaron Beard who seized his.

The 18-year-old took 4-62 in the first innings while Tom Moore took three wickets as the tourists were bowled out for 254.

Essex were excellent in response with hundreds from Jaik Mickleburgh and Tom Westley forming the bedrock of the hosts innings of 412 for 4 declared. Ravi Bopara also contributed 87 not out and Dan Lawrence scored 57 unbeaten.

Essex’s excellence with the bat eventually limited their chances of forcing a result as the three day game ended with Sri Lanka on 42-2. Beard took another wicket whilst Matt Dixon took the other.

Essex v Derbyshire | Specsavers County Championship

The appointment of Anthony McGrath as assistant head coach and batting coach continued to look an astute decision as Essex racked up 538 for 7 declared. That was largely thanks to an excellent 255 from Nick Browne and a first hundred of the season for Dan Lawrence. Jesse Ryder also contributed 51 as Derbyshire were made to toil in the field for 149 overs.

Essex backed up their excellent batting by bowling the visitors out for 280. Ravi Bopara picked up five wickets and Aaron Beard contributed two. None of the Derbyshire batsman could capitalise on starts as Hamish Rutherford top-scored with 49.

The visitors fared better in the second innings though as Essex could not take the quick wickets required to force a victory. Billy Godleman scored 75, Chesney Hughes 66 and Rutherford 68 as Derbyshire comfortably held on for a share of the spoils.

Essex v Surrey | NatWest T20 Blast 

May also saw the start of the NatWest T20 Blast with a sell-out crowd in attendance at The E.C.G as local rivals Surrey came to town. The visitors batted first and were in trouble at 80-6 after a quickfire start from Jason Roy and Kumar Sangakarra.

A late resurgence from Sam Curran and Azhar Mahmood led Surrey to 170 and that was to prove too tough an task for the hosts. Matt Quinn was excellent with the ball for Essex taking 4-35 on T20 debut.

Tom Westley, Ryan ten Doeschate and Ashar Zaidi did their best scoring 46, 36 and 30 each but nobody could get going for the hosts as they stumbled to 162 all out. Azhar Mahmood clinched the man of the match award with four wickets whilst the Curran brothers took five wickets between them.

Glamorgan v Essex | Specsavers County Championship

Essex travelled to Glamorgan looking to return to winning ways and started in dominant fashion bowling the hosts out for 260. Graham Napier continued his impressive form with another five-wicket haul while veteran David Masters returned to the side and took two wickets.

Chris Silverwood’s men then started well but couldn’t take full advantage of being 162-2 and gain a substantial lead. Westley and Bopara were the bedrock with 80 apiece but nobody could support them and give Essex a substantial first innings lead.

A stunning hundred from Will Bragg put Glamorgan back in the box seat as he scored 161 not out to lead his side to 386 for 8 declared and help sex Essex a daunting target of 333. Chris Silverwood’s team were indebted to an attritional 71 from Nick Browne after they had slipped to 46-3. Stumps were pulled up with Essex 160-5, with a draw comfortably achieved in the end.

Northamptonshire v Essex | Specsavers County Championship

The two sides played out for a draw in a high-scoring encounter at Northampton. Ben Duckett rose to prominence with a magnificent 189 as the home side racked up 444 in their first innings. Ravi Bopara snared his second five-wicket haul of the season as Essex toiled hard in the field.

Essex responded in typical fashion scoring a gargantuan 640 for 9 declared. Jaik Mickleburgh scored his first hundred of the season before captain Ryan ten Doeschate scored 145 and James Foster scored a swashbuckling 113 from 95 balls.

Chris Silverwood’s men did their best to force a result, reducing Northants to 75-5 but ran out of time as the game ended in a draw.