Monday, June 12th, 2023


Worcestershire’s six-wicket hero Joe Leach reflected on a “mixed day” for his side on the opening day of the LV=Insurance County Championship match with Sussex at the 1st Central County Ground at Hove.

Leach bowled superbly to finish with 6-73 from 24 overs, and he is now Division Two’s leading wicket-taker with 31 scalps.

But Sussex were able to recover from 47-3 and 142-6 to reach 338-9 from 88 overs by the close.

Leach said: “As a side, it was a bit of a mixed day if I’m perfectly honest.  We bowled well in patches and poorly in patches.  

“From the positions, we put ourselves in, we are probably slightly disappointed that the score is where it is after winning the toss and bowling at the start of the day.

“But equally, Sussex may also feel disappointed that they have given us three or four wickets.  

“It is an outstanding cricket pitch.  If you put the ball in the right area for long enough you did get your rewards.  

“But it also looked easy to bat on for good chunks of the day. Probably honours even on the scoreboard but I think we are slightly disappointed with where it has ended up.”

Leach says Worcestershire are striving to start sessions better with the ball.

He said: “We’ve spoken a lot about starting sessions well, and we haven’t managed to do that today and, if we are brutally honest, that is the most disappointing thing.

“We haven’t managed to do that well enough over the course of the season. It sets the tone for how the session is going to go.

“If you have to spend a period of time dragging it back then it affects the scoreboard and the state of the game.

“It goes without saying that we want to do that better, and we will be looking to.”

Regarding the wicket, Leach said: “I didn’t feel there was loads laterally happening all days. The wickets came more from bounce than lavish sideways movement.

“It was certainly a wicket where, as a bowler, you had to work really hard for your rewards, but equally, if you put the ball in the right areas, it did challenge the batters.

“That being said, the batters showed that if you missed, runs are there to be had. It is a fast outfield, and you could hit through the line of the ball.”