Kent v Essex, Somerset v Lancashire and more: county cricket – live

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    Key events

    Haseeb Hameed getting big kudos from the BBC commentators – all but six of his runs have whistled across the rope. Notts 63-0 v Middlesex.

    The Zummerset live stream is down, a brief respite for those who want a break from worrying about the top order. Currently 50-3, Lammonby and Dickson in Jimmy Anderson’s pocket, Bancroft caught off Tom Bailey. Kohler-Cadmore zipping along nicely though, three fours in his 16.

    SirAlastair joins those unlacing their boots up the pavilion, yesterday’s dreams, todays dregs. Essex racing away from Kent – 66 for one, Wes Agar the wicket taker.

    “Good Morning Tanya, good morning all . . . .”

    Hello Em Jackson! (watching in NE Eng after living in SW Eng )

    “Durham showing how it’s done away from home at this level vs a challenging opponent (and who Glos drew against remember), meanwhile across the Bridge and up the M5, Glos decided to take two Middlesex-amol’s . . . . side-effects of which can include, unlike certain medicines, lack of runs, apparent home-sickness and the need for extended dressing-room rest.”

    Simon Burnton

    Simon Burnton

    The press box at Lord’s is a cocooned ecosphere that sits so far above the rest of the seats that what atmosphere we get is broadcast to us from a microphone positioned elsewhere. What we’re mainly getting today is the sound of the microphone being buffeted by wind, so that’s obviously a thing. Ben Duckett is rattling on at almost a run a ball but Haseeb Hameed is finding life a little more difficult and as I type Ethan Bamber beats the edge again – Middlesex have four slips in, but somehow they haven’t had anything to do yet.

    Simon Burnton

    Simon Burnton

    Greetings from Lord’s. Middlesex have won the toss and will start their attempt to haul themselves off the bottom of the nascent table by trying to defend one extremely short boundary, hindered by the absence of Tom Helm – Martin Andersson makes his first appearance of the season – but helped by it being up the slope. Notts meanwhile bring in Matt Montgomery for Tom Moores. The forecast for the next few days is not exactly encouraging but it looks like play will start in glorious sunshine, and with the home of cricket looking absolutely pristine.

    Ali Martin

    Ali Martin

    Gloucestershire’s top order has crumbled, Marcus Harris, no doubt buzzing about being named in Australia’s Ashes squad, has just received a wet fish around the chops as he plays around one from Joe Leach and is trapped lbw for a 25-ball one. It’s eight for four and the Pears have positively ripened.

    Ali Martin

    Ali Martin

    Like David Rudder in Permission To Mash Up The Place (niche calypso reference, admittedly), Worcestershire are on a roll at New Road, Joe Leach following Ben Gibbon’s monkey business as he tempts Miles Hammond into an expansive drive and a third catch flies to the cordon. Second excellent puch by Jake Libby but after last week’s washout, this isn’t great from Gloucestershire, who are five for three.

    Ali Martin

    Ali Martin

    Make that two in two … Ben Gibbon, strong left-armer, one time construction worker, has winkled out James Bracey in more orthodox fashion, finding a touch of bounce and the shoulder of the bat to send a second catch into the slips. Miles Hammond survives the hat-trick ball and the visitors are one for two after two overs.

    Ali Martin

    Ali Martin

    Underway here at New Road, where Gloucestershire have won the toss and opted to have a bat. Am told by local sage John Curtis we had a mini flood a couple of weeks ago, but it was “clean water” and not the nasty stuff that can occur here. Joe Leach is probing away with the cherry ripe Dukes ball, and I’ve just heard one member wish another a “Happy New Year” … always wondered about the statute of limitations on this. Could easily be the premise for an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm. Suppose it’s still valid for a new season. And as I type that, Chris Dent has fallen to Ben Gibbon. Went to leave, then had a late stab at the ball, which flew into the cordon safely. Gloucestershire none for one.

    Apologies to Simon and Ali, whose musings have lain dormant in my inbox. To follow, just imagine them in real time…

    Ahem, make that Gloucestershire 8-4. Leach 2-8, Gibbon 2-1.

    A bit of a batters’ paradise round the grounds – with the exception of New Road where Ali has put a Guardian curse on them (Gloucs 8-3).

    In Division Two, Lees and Jones giving Labuschagne an early taste of Bazball at The Riverside – Durham 28-0; while Sussex’s Orr and Haines watch, and raise them -41-0 against bottom of the table Yorkshire.

    In Division One, Alastair Cook is leading the Essex charge against Kent – 31-0; Notts’ Hameed and Duckett doing the same at Lord’s, 32-0; Hampshire (21-1) and Somerset (22-1) are slightly more circumspect.

    Jimmy in the wickets at Taunton. Have a pit in my stomach for Somerset’s batting. Somerset 6-1.

    Good morning Andrew!

    @tjaldred morning! Looking forward to the Kent v Essex game. Hoping Kent can bounce back after being totally outclassed by the Bears. Wonder if Agar will be any good. Kent’s overseas seamers have been a mixed bag recently.

    — Andrew Harrison (@andyhamamatsu) April 20, 2023

    He starts ok – with a maiden. Must admit to looking him up – 26, brother of Ashton, played two ODIs for Australia, six foot two, fast medium.

    Wes Agar bowling
    Fast and furious: Wes Agar. Photograph: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo/Shutterstock

    A quiet first five minutes! Ben Gibbon has just taken two in two balls in the first over at New Road. Gloucs 0-2.

    Ali Martin

    Ali Martin

    Greetings from New Road, where I have snuck in unannounced to either Tanya or the office after waking up to glorious sunshine in the West Midlands. There’s a nice buzz at the ground, this being Worcestershire’s first home fixture of the summer and Gloucestershire the semi-local visitors. Out in the middle we have the usual flea circus warm-up, with various mitts, rubber stumps and coaches desperately attempting to nick the ball to the slips after playing careers spent trying to do the exact opposite.

    A word from the county game’s biggest fan:

    A delve into Wisden 2023

    The five cricketers of the year are: Tom Blundell, Ben Foakes, Harmanpreet Kaur, Daryl Mitchell and Matthew Potts.

    A great read from Gary Naylor on last week’s action:

    Congratulations to Rehan Ahmed – and Leicesteshire! Long may they play happily together.

    Division Two table

    1 Leicestershire (played 2) 34

    2 Durham (played 2) 27

    3 Worcestershire (played 2) 27

    4 Sussex (played 1) 21

    5 Derbyshire (played 2) 14

    6 Gloucestershire (played 2) 13

    7 Glamorgan (played 1) 12

    8 Yorkshire (played 2) 12

    Division One table

    1 Warwicks (played 2) 35

    2 Surrey (played 2) 32

    3 Essex (played 2) 28

    4 Hampshire (played 2) 23

    5 Notts (played 2) 23

    6 Northants (played 2) 22

    7 Kent (played 2) 20

    8 Lancashire (played 2) 17

    9 Somerset (played 2) 12

    10 Middlesex (played 2) 6

    Fixtures

    DIVISION ONE

    Canterbury: Kent v Essex

    Lord’s: Middlesex v Nottinghamshire

    The County Ground: Northamptonshire v Hampshire

    Taunton: Somerset v Lancashire

    DIVISION TWO

    Sophia Gardens: Glamorgan v Durham

    Hove: Sussex v Yorkshire

    New Road: Worcestershire v Gloucestershire

    Good morning! It’s round three, already! I saw a duckling on my dog walk, the hawthorn is intoxicatingly sweet and Leicestershire are at the top of the Division Two table.

    A beautiful sprig of hawthorn at dawn.
    Spring is springing. Photograph: John Miller/National Trust/PA

    Seven games in play this week, with Surrey, Warwickshire, Leicestershire and Derby putting their boots on the side table. Loads to talk about this week, including the launch of Wisden, but first – today’s games.



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