Friday, 8 April 2011

Even stevens after day one

First day back at the office for Surrey and it was a mixed bag, almost the worst possible start with a first ball (second of the day) duck for the returning Michael Brown, a mini recovery in the middle, some none-too-clever shots and some true grit.

All in all, 322 all out is probably below par on this pitch, it looked easy enough to bat on with Davies, RHB and Maynard going great guns, but Surrey are by no means out of the game. Northants ended the day on 12-0, Surrey's failure to pick up a bonus in the four overs they bowled probably means the opposition will be the happier of the two sides.

Chris Adams pulled a bit of a rabbit out of the hat in the morning, naming Chris Schofield alongside Gareth Batty, thereby squeezing out Jason Roy. Unless Roy has an injury that is a bizarre selection. Notwithstanding James Middlebrook's three wickets I can't believe that a two-spinner policy was the way to go in April.

Roy's omission meant a gap at number three, filled today by Zander de Bruyn on debut who scored a brisk 35 before he was clean bowled. After he departed Davies and Hamilton-Brown looked to be getting things back on track, when lunch arrived it was 130-odd for 3. However right after the lunch intermission Hamilton-Brown ran out his vice-captain and there was more rebuilding to do.

Maynard came and went with 32 from just 37 balls, and Schofield didn't hang about either. Gareth Batty was Surrey's saviour again (as he was in Surrey's opening fixture of 2010 with 65 against Derbyshire) and a combination of him, Arafat and Meaker dragged Surrey up to 322 all out.

Its a total that gives Meaker, Arafat and Linley plenty to bowl at, but at the same time there's not much wriggle room, one big partnership and Northants will get parity before we know it. I can't help thinking that Wilson, de Bruyn and Maynard could perhaps have batted out a few more balls and allowed the scoreboard to tick over rather than roar along, but ultimately we're definitely well in the game and its set up nicely for a sunny weekend.


manutd24 said...

Hi again - back to the frustrations of supporting Surrey for another year!!

Good day's play by the sounds of it - three solid bonus points and a nice breezy knock v from RHB.

GreenJJ said...

Evening! Another frustrating, but at the same time curiously promising day. It was a long was from an ideal innings, but neither was it awful. I guess we'll know how good an innings it was by about teatime tomorrow!

Lewis said...

Hi Josh,

What a day to start up the season with! Sounds like de Bruyn, Maynard, Wilson and Davies all got in and got out and only RHB and Batty made a meaningful contribution.

How was the pitch looking this morning? Found it quite odd that RHB would win the toss and choose to bat, even after the three hottest days of the year..

GreenJJ said...

Hi Lewis

They certainly did get in and get out, Maynard in particular attempting a huge slightly, but that's part of what you get with Tom I suppose!

I only saw a bit today just before lunch but the pitch looked very good, easy to bat on. If anything it might start to take turn days three and four, but I don't think its going to be extreme. We shall see!