Cricket column by Gloucestershire CCC president John Light
BOOK me in for bed and breakfast. These words were always spoken by Kenny Barrington (Surrey and England) when he realised he was batting on a good wicket.
By this he meant bat all day and well into tomorrow, making the game safe and establishing a winning position. At Northampton, too many Gloucestershire batsmen stayed for lunch or a teatime snack.
It is strange to be critical of a team scoring 358 in the first innings but that is the case. A score of 500 plus would have given captain Klinger the opportunity to win in two ways (a) bowl out Northants twice (b) set up a toughish run chase.
Our low first innings score handed the initiative to the hosts. Had not weather intervened, they aimed to score 650 and then bowl us out on the fourth day.
A bland pitch some rain and a sizeable contribution by Chris Dent made a draw inevitable. This column has always sung the praises of Chris Dent both in performance and potential.
Not all readers have agreed. Chris’ career average now exceeds that of former Gloucestershire and England players Charlie Barnett and George Emmett. I rest my case. More runs please Chris, the promotion race is not over yet.
By batting wicket keeper Gareth Roderick at No.3, Gloucestershire can pick an extra bowler. This time it was under-19 off-spinner Tom Shrewsbury, late of Wycliffe College. When did they last have three players in the county side?
His inclusion means that six of our current squad have represented England at U19 level. A sure sign of how we are moving forward.
Northampton, however, are setting the standard. Off-the-field changes mean a new coach (David Ripley) and a go-ahead chief executive (K D Smith). They are showing other second division sides the way forward but they can be overtaken. There are still four championship matches left, three of which are at home.
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