Sunday, July 21st, 2019


Worcestershire Bowling Coach-Assistant Coach Alan Richardson gave his reaction after day one of the Specsavers County Championship match with Gloucestershire at Cheltenham.

Three wickets to Club Captain Joe Leach helped reduce the home side to 125-4 shortly after lunch while leg spinner Brett D’Oliveira also bowled with control and picked up two scalps.

But the County lost control during the afternoon session as Ryan Higgins (76) scored freely and with and Tom Smith (79 not out) helped Gloucestershire recover to 339-7.

Richardson said: “Your reaction from a bowling point of view to the day? A little disappointment if I’m honest. It was a tough decision to insert them but we thought it was the right one.

“If it was going to do anything, it would be during that first morning and we battled really well in that first session.

“But in the second session, whilst Ryan Higgins and Tom Smith played really well, that was an opportunity lost for us at 125-4.

“To be now in this situation….we know that Cheltenham can be really flat and is a quick scoring ground, but I’d like to think we would have had a bit more control. For the bowlers, it was a little bit disappointing today.

“Higgins scored quickly and put pressure on our guys and I don’t think we responded as well as we can and as well as we would like.

“We talked about doing the right things but we didn’t quite execute them and that was frustrating for everyone.

“It was potentially an opportunity lost there but, fair play to the Gloucestershire guys, they played really well and turned it around for them.”

Richardson was impressed with the performance of D’Oliveira who last month achieved career best figures of 7-92 against Glamorgan at Cardiff.

He said: “I don’t want it to sound all doom and gloom because to take seven wickets today is still a good effort. Obviously the run rate is higher than we would have liked.

“But guys at times really stuck their hand up and Brett (D’Oliveira) certainly did because it was a tough time when he came onto bowl and they were going well.

“He managed to put the brakes on and then made that breakthrough after tea. I think he did really well and is continually showing his value to us with the ball.

“You gave Adam Finch the responsibility to bowl at some key times? I think so. He has got some real weapons. He is six foot plenty, he bowls with good pace, he gets good bounce and he is going to be a dangerous bowler.

“He needs to learn, as we all do when we are going along. He is very raw at the moment. He needs to learn and learn quickly – but he will do, I’m sure.

“We’ve got some exciting players and, with him and Dillon (Pennington) in the side, it is exciting but we might get those inconsistencies and we got that today.

“All five of the seamers have to hold their hands up and say it was up to them to control the game for us and we didn’t quite do that today.”