Warwickshire v Lancashire, LV= County Championship
After Warwickshire failed to bowl Lancashire out in their second innings and chasing an unlikely target of 287 for victory, they were 86-5 at the close of a drawn game.
Early wickets on the final morning gave Warwickshire the perfect start to the day as they looked to wrap up the Lancashire innings quickly and push for a possible victory, but after Agathangelou 19 was stumped after missing an attempted drive off Patel and Kerrigan fell to a superb catch at second slip by Porterfield off Rankin, Prince and Croft dug in and added 66 runs in 19 overs before Prince 36 too was stumped off Patel just before lunch.
With a lead growing, Lancashire added 45 for the sixth wicket in nine overs before Buttler 22 edged Rankin to Ambrose when the lead was almost 200 and with Croft completing his first century of the season, they extended the lead to 286 before Glen Chapple declared setting Warwickshire a target of 287 from a minimum of forty overs.
Croft finished unbeaten on 104 while there were three wickets apiece for Patel and Rankin.
With little chance of either side securing victory, Porterfield and Chopra made a bright start reaching 48 before a complete mix-up between the openers saw Porterfield run out by Davies for 20.
Varun Chopra was bowled by Croft’s gentle off spin for 29 and to complete a great day he then picked up the wickets of Evans and Hain as Warwickshire tried to play out time.
Kerrigan then bowled Ambrose before Ateeq Javid 20* and Rikki Clarke 4* saw Warwickshire to stumps and the draw without further damage, perhaps leaving Lancashire to consider what may have been possible had they have given themselves a little more time to bowl Warwickshire out again.
There was an early success for Lancashire on the third morning when Porterfield 57, edged Smith into the gully and Agathangelou took a smart catch.
Rikki Clarke joined Tim Ambrose and the sixth wicket pair batted through the remainder of the session to go to lunch on 234-5 with Ambrose completing his half century just before the interval.
He was to fall lbw to Kyle Hogg for 62, straight after the break, but Clarke completed his 50 before being bowled round his legs by Simon Kerrigan for fifty six.
Keith Barker’s 44 from 64 balls, ably assisted by some lusty blows from Patel and Rankin took Warwickshire into a 36 run lead before Smith removed Rankin’s off stump to bring the innings to a close on 322.
When Lancashire began their second innings, with nine overs available before tea, Horton 29* and Davies 22* quickly erased the arrears, taking advantage of some loose deliveries as they raced into an eighteen run lead.
Heavy cloud and rain then swept in during the interval delaying the resumption and when play finally resumed 16 overs had been lost in the day after this break.
The opening pair extended their partnership to 71 before Patel trapped Davies 30, lbw not offering a shot and with just eight deliveries remaining in the day Horton was caught behind by Ambrose for 42 off Rankin’s bowling and with Kerrigan sent in as night-watchman Lancashire closed the third day on 84-2 leading by 48 runs going into the final day.
Warwickshire closed Day 2 on 130-4, with William Porterfield unbeaten on 51, trailing Lancashire by 156 from the first innings.
Smith and Chapple extended their seventh wicket partnership to 59 on the second morning before Chapple edged Wright to Ambrose for 33 and Kyle Hogg followed soon afterwards when Patel took a good catch at third slip off Rankin.
Tom Smith continued to bat carefully and had just reached his 50 when he was bowled by Rankin having faced 154 deliveries in his three and a half hour stay at the wicket. Patel’s fourth wicket of the innings brought a little cameo from Kabir Ali to a close, for 25, as Lancashire were dismissed for 286 in the 107th over.
In reply, the innings began immediately after the lunch break and Warwickshire lost Chopra to a sharp catch at slip by Agathangelou for nine and then Ateeq Javid was trapped lbw for seven.
At tea, Warwickshire had reached 47 without further loss from 33 overs, but after the interval, Evans was caught at slip top-edging an attempted cut off Hogg, by Paul Horton for 20.
With the scoring rate creeping along throughout the afternoon and early evening sessions, Sam Hain 22 was trapped lbw by Tom Smith, as the seam attack maintained its strangle hold over the Bears’ batsmen, closing the day with remarkable economy figures of just sixty nine runs coming from the fifty overs bowled by the four Lancashire seam bowlers.
William Porterfield completed his half century just before the close having faced 182 deliveries in his unbeaten innings, holding the Warwickshire batting together and with Tim Ambrose 12 from 19 balls had reached 130-4 from 71 overs by the close of the second day, still trailing the visitors by 156 runs.
After winning the toss and batting Lancashire lost Paul Horton 12, early, when he edged Chris Wright to Tim Ambrose.
Alex Davies and Andrea Agathangelou then added 78 in steady fashion and looked to be going to the lunch interval with the partnership intact, until Jeetan Patel found the edge of Agathangelou’s bat and Varun Chopra took the catch at slip in what was the final over before lunch.
Davies completed his half century immediately after the break, his third in the Championship this season, as Lancashire took the total past 100 for the loss of just the two wickets.
Patel struck again courtesy of a smart leg-slip catch from Porterfield to remove Ashwell Prince for 12 and then bowled Davies for a solid 59.
When Wright removed Buttler without scoring, to another Ambrose catch, Lancashire were 126-5, but Stephen Croft and Tom Smith took them through to tea without further loss and as the new ball approached after the interval, Warwickshire claimed their sixth Lancashire wicket when Rikki Clarke threw himself forward from his follow-through to grab a superb return catch to dismiss Croft for 30.
Glen Chapple joined Tom Smith and had taken the total on to 188-6 from 82 overs when a cloudburst left the outfield soaking wet and play was abandoned for the day.