Slater half-century keeps Derbyshire in contention

Tuesday 26th May 2015
& News
Written by Danny Painter

Ben Slater struck his second half-century of the match to help Derbyshire get back into the game after Lancashire had accumulated a first-innings lead at Southport.

Ashwell Prince struck a double-century to help Lancashire gain a sizable lead of 181 runs before they were bowled out for 551 with Matthew Critchley returning 3-50, including his maiden first-class wicket.

Slater shared a 98-run partnership with Chesney Hughes – who hit 41 – before both batsmen fell in the final two overs of the day as Derbyshire ended Day Three on 123-3, still 58 runs behind.

The first wicket to fall in the day was Tom Taylor’s fourth of the innings when Alex Davies thick-edged him to Chesney Hughes in the slips via a hand from Hashim Amla for 37.

Jordan Clark played an attacked innings for the hosts but succumbed to the spin of David Wainwright when he was adjudged lbw on 39.

Meanwhile, overnight centurion Prince was continuing to bat well for Lancashire and reached the second double-century of his lengthy first-class career and took his side past 500.

18-year-old Matt Critchley then produced a fine spell of leg-spin to first remove Prince for 230 before taking the wickets of Tom Bailey (0) and Simon Kerrigan (1) as Lancashire were bowled out for 551 with Scott Elstone taking the other wicket of Aaron Lilley for a career-best 63.

Faced with a first-innings defect of 181, Derbyshire got off to a positive start with 17 runs scored from the first two overs of the second innings.

Billy Godleman, however, fell in the sixth over when he edged Bailey for Steven Croft to take a fine catch at slip for seven.

Godleman’s opening partner Slater continued to bat well after Godleman’s departure alongside Chesney Hughes, who played a conservative innings to get Derbyshire to 28-1 at the tea interval.

Slater and Hughes played similarly after tea as the Lancashire attack applied the brakes and ramped up the pressure. The pair stood firm despite the pressure and Slater scored his fifth LV= County Championship half-century of the season, hitting nine fours and a six along the way.

In the penultimate over before stumps, the pressure finally told as Slater was caught by Croft off the bowling off Lilley for 58 to bring Tom Taylor to the crease as Night Watchman.

The final over of the day also proved fruitful for Lancashire as they took the wicket of the other set batsman Hughes for 41 when Kerrigan enticed an edge for Croft’s third catch of the innings.

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