Glamorgan v Northants: Day 2

As I settled into my seat, checked the scorecard, and applied yet more sun lotion before today’s play I was as struck by the weakness of Glamorgan’s batting order, especially the very long tail, as I was by the lack of a quality third seamer in the bowling attack yesterday. A lot would depend on Khawaja, Carlson and Cooke, I thought. As it turned out, only one of those three made a decent contribution, Usman Khawaja, who was last man out, for 103, with the Glamorgan total 254. He had got Glamorgan within 27 runs of Northamptonshire when that looked very unlikely. He also became the first player ever to score hundreds in each of his first three County games for Glamorgan.

Earlier on, Glamorgan’s top three batsmen got into the twenties and then got out, taking them to lunch at 115 for 3. I went home for lunch again and, as it was so hot, I had a siesta. Returning to the ground, I found Carlson, Cooke and Salter had all fallen, and saw Smith and Sisodiya follow them. At this point Khawaja was on 67 and, sensing he was about to run out of partners he decided to go up a gear. A flurry of sixes and fours followed to take him to his hundred. He was out the next ball.

Still, with a deficit of only 27, some quick wickets would swing the balance in Glamorgan’s favour. Sadly for them, that emphatically did not happen. Northants openers Procter and Duckett had started the first innings very cautiously but, with the wicket still offering quite a lot to the bowlers they decided to be more aggressive and try put the pressure on the bowlers. It worked.

Glamorgan’s bowling attack became ragged as Duckett in particular took the bull by the horns. The lack of a decent third seamer was again exposed. Marchant De Lange is missing with a hamstring injury and Lucas Carey wasn’t picked, leaving Ruaidhri Smith to do the honours as first change. He bowled poorly, as did the more experienced off-spinner Andrew Salter.

As the runs piled on, the body language of the fielding team showed they knew the game was slipping away.

At stumps, Northamptonshire were 169 without loss, a lead of 196, with Duckett not out on 111 and Procter not out 50. I have to say that Glamorgan bowled too many bad balls at this pair, but you still have to take advantage of your opportunitues as a batsman, and they did so very well indeed.

Northants are well ahead with two days remaining. The likeliest scenario now is that they will amass a huge total tomorrow, bat Glamorgan out of the game, and wrap up victory on the last day.

It’s hard to tell if the pitch is getting easier or harder. After two full days under the grill you might expect it to wear, but there was no sign of that in the batting this evening. On the other hand, the umpires did have a look at the pitch a couple of times, as if they were worried by its state. Whatever happens to the pitch, it certainly doesn’t look like the weather will save Glamorgan!

Now, I need a drink.

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3 Responses to “Glamorgan v Northants: Day 2”

  1. Simon Kemp Says:

    Khawaja has three hundreds in his first thee (first-class) games for Glamorgan, he’s actually had 5 innings. In the first two games he scored the hundred in Glam’s 2nd innings (hopefully he can continue to score more runs in his 2nd innings compared to his first!). Interestingly these may be his only 3 first-class games for Glamorgan, as Marsh is the regular player and will be back for the rest of the season.
    The only player previously who got hundres in his first two games for Glamorgan was the famous Javed Miandad in 1980. He had 6 good years as an overseas player for Glamorgan, in one of their unsuccessful periods, and then at the beginning of the 1986 season he didn’t turn up, and never told anyone why.

  2. Simon Kemp Says:

    The radio commentators were getting a bit concerned when the umpires were checking the pitch after some instances of uneven bounce, because there was a 50-over game against Hampshire in 2015 abandoned in mid-afternoon because of a dangerous pitch causing sharply-rising deliveries. I was at that one so remember it well. The Cardiff square does seem a bit unreliable for an international ground.

    • telescoper Says:

      It’s true there was a bit of extra bounce now and then but nothing too alarming. I prefer a pitch with something in it for the bowlers.

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