Saturday, May 27th, 2017

Mitchell Hits Superb 161 As Worcs Take Control At Northampton

Daryl Mitchell hit a superb 161 and completed back to back Specsavers County Championship centuries as Worcestershire secured maximum batting points on the second day of the clash with Northamptonshire at Wantage Road.

The opening batsman followed up his 120 against Derbyshire at the 3aaa County Ground by reaching three figures off 164 balls with 11 fours as Worcestershire totalled 434 – a lead of 196.

Then skipper Joe Leach and Josh Tongue both struck an early blow in dismissing Northants opener Max Holden (6) and skipper Alex Wakely (16).

The home side closed on 53-2 – still 143 in arrears.

Mitchell went to his 26th first class ton with a three through mid wicket off spinner Graeme White.

It was another splendid innings by the 33-year-old who gave just one chance in completing his century.

He shared in a fourth wicket stand of 169 in 46 overs with Tom Kohler-Cadmore (76).

Mitchell's 244 ball innings finally when he was trapped lbw by Nathan Buck after hitting 19 fours with the total 317-5 in the 89th over.

Leach and Jack Shantry bludgeoned 69 for the ninth wicket to ram home the advantage.

Mitchell said: “Northants have actually been a bit of a bogey team for me until the last couple of years so it’s nice to get a few.

“To get 400 is always our target and we got there with a couple of decent partnerships.

“Tom (Kohler-Cadmore) came in and played a really important knock, he’s good to bat with and that was an enjoyable stand.

“We’ve had two good days here and got a big lead on a deteriorating pitch so hopefully we can press home the advantage on Sunday."

Worcestershire resumed on 108-2 in reply to Northants 238 all out with Mitchell unbeaten on 52 and Joe Clarke 17.

Mitchell looked in good touch and on drove and cover drove Buck for early boundaries.

A boundary by Clarke through the covers off Rory Kleinveldt brought up the 50 partnership with Mitchell in 22 overs.

But after making 24 Clarke could not get his bat down on time on a Kleinveldt delivery and was bowled at 130-3 in the 38th over.

Mitchell on 61 survived a sharp chance off Ben Sanderson with Alex Wakely at second slip unable to hold on after diving away to his right.

He rubbed salt into the bowler's wound by crashing the next delivery through the covers for another four.

Kohler-Cadmore looked in good nick and greeted a change of ends for Buck by collecting successive boundaries.

The 50 partnership came up in 14 overs before Mitchell completed his hundred and Worcestershire secured their first batting bonus point in the 59th over via Kohler-Cadmore's off drive to the ropes at Buck's expense. 

Worcestershire reached 214-3 off 61 overs by lunch.

Mitchell and Kohler-Cadmore completed a century stand in 26 overs and Kohler-Cadmore's own fifty came off 101 balls with seven fours.

A square cut for four by Mitchell off Graeme White steered Worcestershire into a first innings lead.

The runs continued to flow and a single off White enabled Mitchell to complete his 150 from 221 deliveries with 17 boundaries.

The second new ball was taken instantly after 80 overs and Kohler-Cadmore immediately had a let off on 75 as Ben Duckett at first slip spilled a straightforward chance off Kleinveldt.

But he was able to add only one more run before losing his middle stump to Sanderson. Kohler-Cadmore had batted with plenty of responsibility and struck 10 fours in his 159 ball innings.

Then came the end of Mitchell's latest significant contribution as Worcestershire pursued maximum batting points.

Ben Cox made a breezy 24 before he gloved a Buck delivery to Duckett at first slip from the final ball before tea at 352-6 in the 95th over.

Ed Barnard (9) was lbw to a delivery from Buck who then bowled Josh Tongue (1) to leave Worcestershire on 365-8.

But Leach and Shantry went on the offensive to great effect with some clean hitting which propelled Worcestershire  to maximum batting points in the 103rd over.

Leach smashed Max Holden for six over long off and then a cover drive for four off  Ben Sanderson took him to 50 off 34 balls with seven fours and a six.

He was bowled by the next delivery from Sanderson who ended the innings as Nathan Lyon departed lbw first ball.

Leach took the new ball and he cleaned up Holden with a pitched up delivery from around the wicket which knocked out the off stump with 10 on the board.

Tongue replaced Leach after a five over spell and he also broke through as Wakely (16) went for the hook and was caught by Shantry at deep fine leg at 42-2.