Match Report | Lancashire v Essex


Lancashire v Essex | Specsavers County Championship | Emirates Old Trafford

Lancashire Team |Alex Davies (17), Haseeb Hameed (23), Liam Livingstone (7), Dane Vilas (33), Shiv Chanderpaul (11), Jos Buttler (6) (WK), Ryan McLaren (35) (C), Jordan Clark (16), Kyle Jarvis (27), Stephen Parry (4), Tom Bailey (8).

Essex Team | Varun Chopra (6) (C), Nick Browne (10), Dan Lawrence (28), Ravi Bopara (25), Adam Wheater (31), Ashar Zaidi (99) James Foster (7), Paul Walter (22), Simon Harmer (11), Sam Cook (16), Jamie Porter (44).

Umpires | Steve O’Shaughnessy & Alexander Wharf

Toss | Uncontested, Essex elected to bowl first

Result| Match Drawn, Lancashire 9 points, Essex 9 points.

Day Four | Close of Play Report

Lancashire and Essex drew their title contenders clash at Old Trafford with both teams taking 9 points from a match where 204 overs were lost to the weather.

Division One leaders Essex would have been the happier of the two sides with the final outcome having protected the 36 points advantage over their nearest rivals and with three matches remaining, they need just 37 points to lift the Championship crown for the first time since 1992.

Play on the final day did not get underway until 1:40pm because of rain and when the action did eventually commence, there were a minimum 56 overs remaining.

Essex resumed on 115 for 4 and requiring 26 runs to avert the follow-on but Adam Wheater and James Foster steered their side past that challenge within 6 overs of the resumption when the latter collected the fourth boundary of his innings.

With the total still on 141, Wheater’s valuable innings of 21 came to an end when he edged Ryan McLaren to gully. Two further wickets fell within ten runs. Ashar Zaidi was caught behind for 6 to earn Lancashire their second bowling bonus point and Foster lost his leg stump to Tom Bailey for 17.

At 151 for 7, Essex still trailed by 139 on first innings with a minimum of 46 overs still remaining and the home side seeking to add a further bowling point.

However, Paul Walter took a decisive stance on subsequent proceedings featuring in two profitable partnerships that eventually gained the visitors what had seemed an unlikely batting point.

He and Simon Harmer added 21 for the eighth wicket spanning 11 overs before the South African was trapped in front of his stumps on the stroke of tea for 11 before Jamie Porter joined Walter.

Together they added an unbroken 20 runs and fittingly, it was a boundary by Walter that brought up the 200 and a batting point for the table-toppers. It took the batsman onto 32 having spent an hour and a half at the crease having faced 61 balls.

Essex then declared on 202 for 8 with Porter 7 not out having batted for almost 40 minutes to frustrate the home side and leave the two captains to shake hands on the draw after Lancashire had declared their second innings on 0-0, taking the match into the final hour and a result more or less unobtainable.

Day Four | Tea Report

Essex safely averted the follow-on after play finally resumed at 1:40pm and by tea, they were 172 for 8 with a minimum of 36.2 overs remaining.

When the visitors resumed on 115 for 4 in bright sunshine with 56 overs of play left in the match, the immediate target was to reach 141 and ensure that Lancashire would have to bat again. Adam Wheater and James Foster combined to ensure that criteria was reached.

Boundaries by both batsmen in the same over took their side to within 5 runs of the safety net and four overs later, Foster struck the fourth boundary of his innings to reach the initial target of the day.

In the next over, Wheater, having batted in total for just over an hour, he edged a delivery from Ryan McLaren to gully and departed for 21 with the scoreboard now showing 142 for 5 and five runs later, Ashar Zaidi (6) pushed forward to Tom Bailey to give wicket-keeper Jos Buttler a catch and the home side a second bowling point.

Next to go was Foster for 17 which included four boundaries. He played outside the line and lost his leg stump to give Bailey his second wicket of the innings and leave Essex 151 for 7.

With 40 overs remaining, the visitors were 164 for 7 but Paul Walter and Simon Harmer battled for three-quarters of an hour until their 21 run stand was ended when Jordan Clark found a delivery that struck Harmer (11) on the pads.

Tea was then taken, with Walter 11 not out and Essex trailing by 118 runs on first innings.

Day Four | Lunch Report

Overnight rain that persisted until an hour before the scheduled resumption of play meant that there was no play before lunch on the final day of the Specsavers County Championship clash between Lancashire and Essex at Old Trafford.

The sun did finally make an appearance and with a drying breeze, the home side will be hoping that the umpires do allow for some play this afternoon although the outfield looks extremely wet.

If play does re-commence, Essex will resume on 115 for 4 after Lancashire reached 290 all out in their first innings. Both teams have so far taken three bonus points from the match which allows Essex to retain their status quo of a 36-point lead with three more matches remaining, starting with a trip to Edgbaston to face bottom of the table Warwickshire next week.

Day Three | Match Highlights

Day Three | Close of Play Report

Play on Day Three came to a premature end when bad light and rain prevented the teams from returning to the pitch after the Tea break at Emirates Old Trafford.

Essex will go into Day Four on 115-4 requiring a further 26 runs to avoid the follow-on with Adam Wheater arriving at stumps on 15 not out. Ashar Zaidi is expected to partner Wheater in the middle batting at 6 when the players return to the field on the final day of the match.

There was no play after tea because of rain when Essex had reached 115 for 4 in reply to Lancashire’s first innings of 290 all out on Day Three of the Specsavers County Championship contest at Emirates Old Trafford.

The top two teams in Division One were separated by 36 points at the start of the match and that is still the margin of difference after both sides have collected three points apiece.

The first target on the final day for the visitors is now to reach 146 and therefore avoid the follow-on.

Essex lost a couple of early wickets with the loss of Nick Browne for 6 and Dan Lawrence for 12 with just 23 runs on the board but Varun Chopra and Ravi Bopara composed patient half-century partnership spanning 25 overs to revive the innings.

Browne misjudged the line and was bowled by Tom Bailey having offered no stroke while Lawrence had struck a couple of boundaries before he edged to third slip when facing Ryan McLaren.

Chopra and Bopara though showed excellent application and judgement as they pulled the innings around and brought the total onto 50 with a boundary by Bopara.

It was another boundary, this time a pull by Chopra that realised the 50 stand from 91 balls and steady progress continued although Bopara was dropped at second slip by Alex Davies when facing Bailey having scored 18 and with the score on 78.

However in his next over, the bowler gained reward. Chopra had batted for 2 and a half hours to reach 40 when he was trapped in the crease by a full-length delivery to leave the visitors 81 for 3.

With the floodlights on, Adam Wheater got off the mark with an intended upper cut beyond the slip cordon for 4 and followed up with another shot that reached the ropes. The gritty Bopara looked comfortable showing consistent good judgement and patience despite the deteriorating light.

The umpires took a light meter reading and decided play could continue and then took another reading two overs later. Lancashire skipper McLaren immediately introduced spin at both ends and with the final scheduled delivery of the afternoon, Bopara edged a ball from Stephen Parry into the hands of his spin partner Livingstone at slip.

That concluded Bopara’s 2 hour 24 minute stay during which he scored 34 but that was to be the last action of the day as rain commenced during the tea interval with play abandoned for the day at 5.10pm.

Wheater will resume in the morning having scored 15 from 42 balls thus far.

Earlier, Lancashire added another 68 runs before being bowled out for 290 having resumed the day on 222 for 8. Jamie Porter removed opener Haseeb Hameed who had only added three runs to his overnight score when he was leg before by a ball that kept low and that earned the visitors a third bowling point.

However, they were held up by a frustrating last wicket stand of 57 in nine overs .he bowled Kyle Jarvis for 26 leaving Bailey 36 not out.

Porter finished with 5 for 73 and the fifth time this season he has claimed five wickets or more in an innings. Sam Cook returned 2 for 59 from 26 overs, while the other wicket takers were Harmer and Paul Walter with figures of 2-81 and 1-28 respectively.


Day Three | Tea Report

Essex added 77 runs in the afternoon session while losing two further wickets to leave them on 115 for 4 at tea.

Varun Chopra and Ravi Bopara had extended their third wicket partnership to 58 runs with the half-century stand arriving from 91 balls to illustrate the
watchful but effective approach by the batsmen.

Facing the bowling of Tom Bailey, Bopara was dropped at second slip by Alex Davies when he had scored 18 but three runs later and with the total on 81, Bailey got consolation when he trapped Chopra on the front pad for 40.

Adam Wheater played a deliberate uppish cut that raced to the rope to get off the mark and soon added another boundary but with the light deteriorating, the umpires took out the light meter before allowing play to continue.

With the floodlights on, Bopara struck the fourth boundary of his innings to bring up the 100 as he and Wheater displayed good concentration and determination.

The umpires had another light reading at the end of that over and play carried on with the home side resorting to spin at both ends.

Then facing the final scheduled delivery of the post-lunch session, Bopara edged a ball from Stephen Parry into the hands of Liam Livingstone at slip to end an innings spanning 2 hours and 24 minutes that brought him 34 runs.

Wheater meanwhile will resume on 15 but the resumption is set to be delayed with light rain now falling and the light still poor.

Day Three | Lunch Report

Essex reached the interval on day three of their County Championship clash with Lancashire on 38 for 2 after they had bowled the home side out for 290 at Old Trafford.

Nick Browne and Dan Lawrence were early casualties for the visitors scoring 6 and 12 respectively but Varun Chopra with 14 and Ravi Bopara on 5 took the side through to the lunch break.

Lancashire added a further 68 runs at the start of the day before losing their final two wickets, one of which fell to Jamie Porter who collected a five-wickets haul for the fifth time this season.

He trapped Haseeb Hameed leg before with a ball that kept low after the opener had added just three runs to his overnight 85 but frustratingly, the last wicket pair of Tom Bailey and Kyle Jarvis posted a 57 runs partnership in 52 balls before Jarvis lost his off stump when bowled by Simon Harmer for 26.

The last four Lancashire wickets had added 198 runs to fashion a recovery for the home side who had been 92 for 6 at one stage.

Porter finished with 5 for 73, Sam Cook 2 for 59 and Harmer 2 for 81 as Essex extended the 36 points lead they held over their opponents at the start of the game by collecting three bonus points while Lancashire had to settle for 2 batting points.

In reply, Chopra and Browne started cautiously although both got off the mark with a single apiece from the first over.

Both played watchfully until, with the total on 9, Browne misjudged the line in the seventh over when facing Ryan McLaren and lost his off pole playing no shot.

Lawrence, who had suffered a ‘pair’ in the previous match with Somerset, soon reached the boundary with a fine off drive against Bailey and had added another before he edged a sharp delivery from McLaren to third slip where Dane Vilas took the catch.

That wicket fell on 23 but Chopra and Bopara steered their side through the remaining 3 overs to the break.

Day Two | Match Highlights

Day Two Reaction | James Foster praises the Essex bowling attack after restricting Lancashire

Day Two | Close of Play Report:

Division One leaders Essex enjoyed an excellent day in the Specsavers County Championship contest with second-placed Lancashire at Old Trafford and by the close, the visitors had extended their 36 points advantage by another point.

The home side were 222 for 8 when bad light called a halt to proceedings with 3 overs still to be bowled in the day’s allocation. Half of those wickets fell to Jamie Porter who took his tally for the season to 56 in the competition.

Lancashire were sustained by opener Haseeb Hameed who was 85 not out having batted for 5 hours and 17 minutes. He was fortunate to survive an early testing by Porter and Championship debutant Sam Cook who both beat the bat on a number of occasions without finding the edge.

Despite Hameed’s gallant effort, the hosts were in a parlous situation when they found themselves 92 for 6 but Hammed was then joined in two half-century partnerships, the first with Jordan Clark that added 53 runs and then with Stephen Parry when 77 were added taking the total onto 222.

Porter, named by the PCA as the August Player of the Month, wasted little time in making his impression on the game. Play had been entirely washed out on the scheduled opening day and rain prevented a start until 11.45am today but with the third ball of the match, Porter had Alex Davies caught by Simon Harmer at second slip without a run on the board.

It was a great start for the bowler and stand-in captain Varun Chopra who was deputising in the role in the absence of Ryan ten Doeschate. Porter was to go on and claim three more victims, Dean Vilas (7), Jos Buttler (13) and Parry (35) to finish with 4 for 54. His wicket of Parry came with the first delivery of the second new ball

Cook claimed the wicket of Liam Livingstone, who had his off stump uprooted by the 20 year-old and Jordan Clark who was one of two smart catches by Dan Lawrence fielding in the gully.

At lunch, the home side were 45 for 3 but Paul Walter struck with the ninth delivery of the afternoon session when he removed the dangerous Shivnarine Chanderpaul for 23 who played a loose pull to gift a catch James Foster.

The other wicket to fall was that of Red Rose skipper Ryan McLaren who was on 22 when beaten in flight by off-spinner Harmer who was claiming his 54th Championship wicket of the summer and ended the day just two behind Porter in their own private duel to end as the county’s leading wicket taker.

Cook ended with 2 for 32, Harmer 1 for 64 and Walter 1 for 28 in what was a rewarding day for the visitors although their opponents plight might have made really grim reading had it not been for the application shown by Hameed.

His innings was painstakingly but effectively slow for much of the time. He took 54 balls to reach double figures whilst his next run took another 19 balls. By the time he arrived at his half-century, he had faced a total of 188 deliveries that included 7 boundaries. It was attritional but altogether effective.

He did break out of his self-imposed shackles after reaching the milestone adding his next 35 runs from 45 balls assisted by a 6 off Harmer and three more fours.

He will resume in the morning looking to achieve a second batting point for his side while Essex will be hoping to add a third bowling point by taking another wicket with the second new ball just one over old.

Day Two | Tea Report:

Another rewarding session of play for league leaders Essex who captured three more wickets to extend their points lead to 38 over second placed Lancashire at Old Trafford.

The home side were 115 for 6 at the break after Jamie Porter, Paul Walter and Simon Harmer each picked up a wicket in the session.

Resuming on 45 for 3, Shivnarine Chanderpaul became the first casualty of the afternoon when he edged a ball from Walter into the gloves of James Foster with only one run scored after the interval.

Jos Buttler had scored 13 out of a fifth wicket stand of 19 when he became a third wicket for Porter hanks to a fine diving catch low down by Dan Lawrence low down at gully.

The sixth wicket to fall, and one that secured a second bowling point for the Division One pace-setters, was that of Ryan McLaren. He was beaten in flight by off-spinner Harmer for 22 to leave the hosts on a parlous 92 for 6.

That was Harmer’s 54th Championship wicket of the summer whilst Porter now has 55 as the pair enjoy their own private battle to end the summer as the County’s leading wicket-taker in their memorable summer of red ball cricket.

The one batsman who remained unmoved by the clatter of wickets was Haseeb Hameed.

The right-handed opening batsman had faced 54 balls in the day before moving into double figures and then spent another 19 balls before adding to his account. That seemed breathtakingly speedy by his standards as he faced up to another 36 balls before increasing his tally when taking three runs off Harmer.

However, he then found the acceleration pedal to reach the interval unbeaten on 30 from 146 balls having so far batted for 3 hours and twenty minutes. Jordan Clark was the other not out batsman at tea having scored 8.

Porter has so far taken 3 for 51, Walter has 1 for 15, Sam Cook 1 for 18 and Harmer 1 for 20.

Day Two | Lunch Report

League leaders Essex have made a wonderful start in their County Championship clash with nearest pursuers Lancashire at Old Trafford as they reduced the home side to 45 for 3 at the interval with two wickets for Jamie Porter and one on Championship debut for Sam Cook.

With the opening day’s play washed out by the weather, there was further delay because of rain before play finally got underway at 11.45 a.m. but it took only three deliveries before the visitors struck following an uncontested toss.

Named as the PCA player of the month for August, Porter extended his celebrations when he had Alex Davies week caught by Simon Harmer at second slip without a run on the board to give Varun Chopra a superb start in his first match as stand-in captain.

Cook shared the new ball with Porter and both bowlers beat the bat on a number of occasions with Porter moving the ball both ways.

Cook then claimed his maiden Championship wicket when he bowled Liam Livingstone for 7 with a ball that removed the batsman’s off stump to leave the home side 9 for 2.

Thirteen runs later, Porter claimed his second scalp of the morning to give Essex a first bowling point that extended their lead in the Championship to 37 and it was Dane Vilas that became Porter’s 54th Championship victim of the summer when he was pinned in front of his stumps attempting to work the ball into the leg side.

Shivnarine Chanderpaul and opener Haseeb Hameed carried Lancashire through to lunch although neither looked happy against the new ball pair or off-spinner Simon Harmer who bowled three overs immediately before lunch.

Hameed has faced 48 balls in accumulating 5 runs whilst Chanderpaul is 22 not out from 29 balls.

Essex made two changes from the side with Mohammad Amir unavailable due to injury and Ryan ten Doeschate absent for personal reasons. Youngster Sam Cook and Ashar Zaidi, who is playing only his second Championship match of the season, deputized for the absent regulars.

Day One | Match Report

There was no play on the opening day of the County Championship contest between Lancashire and Essex at Emirates Old Trafford after heavy overnight rain that continued throughout the morning left the outfield waterlogged.

An early lunch was taken at noon but with no improvement in the weather and with the local forecast indicating that conditions were not likely to improve, umpires Steve O’Shaughnessy and Alex Wharf took the pragmatic decision to call off play for the day at 12:50pm.

With four matches remaining, Essex arrived in Manchester holding a 36-point leading their pursuit for their first Championship title since 1992.