Monday, August 15th, 2016

County Set 277 Target After Fine Knocks By Clarke And Leach

Joe Clarke came within two runs of his fifth first class century of the season and Joe Leach continued his fine all-round match as Worcestershire set Glamorgan a 277 target on day three of the Specsavers County Championship clash at New Road.

England Lions batsman Clarke was in supreme form and delighted the sunshine drenched crowd with a series of regal boundaries.

But on 98 he fell victim to a superb one-handed catch on the square leg boundary by Lukas Carey after pulling a delivery from Graham Wagg.

Clarke has now moved passed 900 first class runs for the summer and featured in a century partnership with Ross Whiteley.

Then Leach (65 not out) shepherded the lower order as the last three wickets added 114 runs before Worcestershire were dismissed for 393.

The 25-year-old made an early breakthrough when Glamorgan launched their reply in having Nick Selman (0) caught by keeper Ben Cox in his first over without a run on the board.

Worcestershire resumed on 150-2 – an overall lead of 33 – with Tom Fell on 65 and Clarke 32 and lost two wickets in the first two overs of the day.

Fell drove at a delivery from Wagg without addition to his overnight score and edged through to keeper Mark Wallace.

In the next over Tom Kohler-Cadmore (0) played forward to Michael Hogan and was also caught behind.

Clarke and Whiteley then led a strong recovery act by the home side.

Clarke straight drove Wagg for four to reach his half century off 112 balls with six fours and then Whiteley pulled Craig Meschede to the ropes to bring up the 200.

Worcestershire reached lunch on 222-4 and Clarke twice on drove Carey for four after the resumption to move into the 90s.

But Carey pulled off his spectacular boundary catch when the ball looked to be sailing for six to end a partnership of 104 in 36.1 overs between Clarke and Whiteley.

Then Whiteley was dismissed in unfortunate fashion by Wagg's next delivery when on 37.

He ducked under a delivery but the ball hit hit bat and ballooned up to Wallace behind the wicket.

Ben Cox (9) was lbw to Craig Meschede (9) and Ed Barnard (16) departed in the same fashion to Wagg – his fifth wicket of the innings.

But then Joe Leach and Jack Shantry continued the battle and took the total to the 350 mark.

Their stand was worth an invaluable 56 in 18 overs until Shantry (29) was bowled attempting to cut spinner Owen Morgan.

There was time for Leach to bring up his half century with a six over long on off Morgan who wrapped up the innings by having Charlie Morris lbw for 11.