Match Preview: Essex v Warwickshire


Essex v Warwickshire

LV= Insurance County Championship
The Cloudfm County Ground
Thursday 20 – Sunday 23 May
11am start

For the first time since September 2019, spectators will be at The Cloudfm County Ground on Thursday when Essex meet Warwickshire in the next round of Group One matches in the LV=Insurance County Championship.

Essex will be seeking revenge on this week’s opponents having been beaten by the Bears at Edgbaston when the teams met a month ago. That represents one of two defeats for the home side this term but they bounced back with a comprehensive win at Chelmsford when they beat Derbyshire to take over the top spot in Group One last week.

In a closely contested section, Essex have 76 points from their six games, three more than Nottinghamshire and Durham who have both played one match fewer. Worcestershire have 70 points from six matches whilst Thursday’s visitors to Chelmsford have accrued 67 points from their five matches.



Hear from Harmer:

Reflecting on the win against Derbyshire, Harmer extended praise to the Essex batsmen for their part in setting up the victory before acknowledging the quality of the Chelmsford pitch.

He said: “Derbyshire won the toss, decided to bat but then the wicket sat under the covers for an entire day, so, there was definitely something there for the seamers and there was something there for the spinners.

“Dan Lawrence played an unbelievable knock as did Tom Westley, as did Nick Browne, as did Alastair Cook. So, if you look at it, it was a really good four-day wicket. There was a little bit of everything if you did your disciplines well.

“I think Chelmsford does produce good four-day wickets, very seldom do you get a poor wicket. I obviously love playing here, the ball always turns and bounces and there’s always something to keep me interested.”

The phenomenal spinner has now taken at least eight wickets or more in a first-class innings on eight occasions; more than any other bowler in the past 50 years.

Commenting on his career-best figures against Derbyshire (9 for 80) and his match return of 12 for 202, the 32-year-old said: “It is a performance-based sport and there are days when you do well and there are games when you don’t do well.

“I’ve had a few games recently where I haven’t taken many wickets so when it is your day you have to cash in big.

“On a batting wicket you can’t get 50 you need to get 150 and if it is turning or there is something there for me, I need to get big wicket hauls. You never know when the next wicket is going to come.”

Injury/Absentees News:

Essex have named a 12-man squad with Peter Siddle added to the team that beat Derbyshire last week.


Warwickshire drew a rain-affected encounter with Worcestershire at Edgbaston in their previous match although there were centuries for Rob Yates and Michael Burgess. Head Coach Mark Robinson is delighted with the progress made by his squad.

Robinson said: “There is a lot of talent here and potential and good players and a good feel around us. We’ve had a calmness and shown some really good resilience at times with the ability to take the punches, not go on the ropes and to bounce back which is a great trait to have as a team.

“There are areas where we are going to get better and areas in which we need to get better, but we are moving.”

Rob Yates proved a thorn in the Essex side earlier in the season with a classy and unruffled century to guide his side to victory.

Essex had been left reeling by a wretched and defining 90 minutes period on Day Three when they lost their first five second-innings wickets for just 36 runs.

Challenged to make 256 to win from a minimum of 82 overs, the Bears reached the winning post with eight balls to spare thanks to an unbeaten 120 by 21-year-old opener Yates with Sam Hain offering chief support with 60.

One to Watch:

England opener Dom Sibley is due to return after a minor fracture to the index finger on his right hand when fielding at slip during Warwickshire’s match with Nottinghamshire a month ago. He will be keen to prove his fitness ahead of the Test Series against New Zealand that starts in two weeks.


The two teams last met in the County Championship at Chelmsford in 2019 where the home side took the honours, winning by 187 runs.

Alastair Cook and Dan Lawrence starred in both innings for Essex who totalled 245 (Will Rhodes 5 for 17) and then 316-9 declared. Cook contributed 84 and 53 whilst Lawrence scored 61 and 74.

Peter Siddle then returned 5 for 33 as Warwickshire were dismissed for 161 and then Simon Harmer bagged 6 for 75 as the Bears were bowled out for 213.

In the 122 Championship clashes between the sides, Essex have secured 39 victories and 48 draws with 34 defeats and one match tied.

Potential Milestones:

Nick Browne requires 27 more runs to reach 6,000 first-class runs for Essex.
Adam Wheater requires 2 runs to reach 3,000 first-class runs for Essex.
Jamie Porter requires 4 more wickets to record 350 first-class wickets for Essex.
Adam Wheater requires 7 more victims to reach 150 first-class dismissals for Essex. He has currently claimed 131 catches and 12 stumpings.
Simon Harmer requires 11 more wickets to record 300 first-class wickets for Essex

How To Watch:

Our Live Stream service will be available across all four days of this game from 11am, which also includes player stats, scorecards and clips throughout the day. Access via the Essex Cricket Matchzone is available here.