Wilson top-scores on enthralling first day

Gary Wilson hit 66 as 334 runs were scored and 13 wickets taken on an entertaining opening day of the Specsavers County Championship match against Northamptonshire at Queen’s Park, Chesterfield.

After a troubled start to the morning, Derbyshire closed Day One of the Custom Solar Chesterfield Festival of Cricket, in association with Chesterfield Borough Council, in a good position with Northamptonshire 74-3, trailing by 186 runs.

Wilson and Harvey Hosein (58) hit half-centuries and Ben Sanderson claimed 5-53 in a competitive and entertaining first innings which saw Derbyshire all out for 260.

After Billy Godleman won the toss and elected to bat first, Northamptonshire seized the initiative in overcast conditions in the opening half an hour – the hosts soon 21-3 with the top three back in the Pavilion.

Alex Hughes (12) added 32 with Hosein, but once the all-rounder dragged a short delivery from Nathan Buck onto his stumps, the hosts were soon in trouble again, reduced to 53-4.

Hosein and Matt Critchley, playing on Queen’s Park a year on from his century last season, added 56 for the fifth wicket heading into the lunch interval, bringing an end to a morning dominated by Northamptonshire and Sanderson.

A lapse in concentration and a good delivery first up after lunch meant Critchley was out for 37, lbw to Buck.

However, Hosein continued to bat calmly and with good technique, registering his first half-century of the summer off 98 balls, with six fours.

The young batsman’s innings eventually came to and end on 58, well-caught by the diving Alex Wakely, but his contribution had helped Derbyshire to 150 in a good recovery after the early wickets.

Hardus Viljoen (16) crashed a six over long off but was out soon after, Sanderson claiming his fifth of the innings to round off an impressive day for the tall quick.

Wilson took the mantle from Hosein and after Palladino was stumped for one, the wicketkeeper-batsman found he was able to build a partnership with debutant Dan Wheeldon.

The tenth-wicket stand was worth 52 as the Irishman reached his half-century off 78 balls, with five fours and one six in a fluent innings which was only brought to an end by a quicker effort ball from Buck, which nipped back to remove off stump.

Batting with the number 11, Hamidullah Qadri, Wheeldon freed his arms and hit fours down the ground, as well as a six over extra cover.

Valuable runs, the boundaries took Derbyshire past 250 and onto 260 before Qadri was bowled by Seekkuge Prasanna for six.

Taking the new ball, Wheeldon and Viljoen toiled in the heat under blue skies at Queen’s Park, but Ben Duckett and Luke Procter negotiated the new ball well and brought the 50 up in the tenth over.

It took a special over from Palladino to leave Derbyshire sharing what was a highly entertaining first day’s cricket in the return to Specsavers County Championship action.

Hitting a line and length the 35-year-old had Duckett (29) caught behind attempting a pull before he bowled Ricardo Vasconcelos (0) two balls later.

Viljoen had Luke Procter lbw for 30 with a fast, straight delivery as the visitors closed on 74-3 with both sides in a position to claim the ascendancy on Day Two.

Click HERE to view scorecard.

Custom Solar Chesterfield Festival of Cricket, in partnership with Chesterfield Borough Council. Buy your tickets in advance and save. Call 01332 388 101 or buy online.

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