Dave Houghton believes there were some positives to take out of Derbyshire’s performance against Middlesex at Lord’s, but the Head of Cricket knows lessons must be learnt from the defeat.
Despite making bright starts with the ball in both innings, Derbyshire were beaten by 112 runs, with expensive spells easing the pressure on the hosts, before a few quick wickets in each innings saw the visitors chasing the game.
Leus du Plooy scored a brilliant 90 in the first innings, while Billy Godleman (70) and Matt Critchley (58) gave Derbyshire a chance on the final day, but the experienced duo of Toby Roland-Jones and Tim Murtagh shared eight wickets to end any hopes of a famous victory.
Anuj Dal scored 48 on Day Two and took four wickets in the match, Sam Conners claimed five wickets on his return from injury, while Alex Thomson also impressed with the ball, taking 3-71 in Middlesex’s second innings.
Houghton was pleased to see some progress within the side, but says there’s further work to be done for Derbyshire to pick up their first red ball win of the season.
“You’ve got to try to take the positives out of the game,” He said.
“It’s tough, because we’re still losing and the more you do that, the harder and harder it gets to shake off, so you have to focus on positives. We made a good start with the ball in both innings, but we need to go for less boundaries than we are at the moment.
“Hopefully our bowlers will be able to learn from what they’ve played against, and there were a couple of really good examples of how to tie and end up without taking wickets all the time from Middlesex.
“The biggest thing we need to learn as a young bowling unit is how to bowl tighter and control the scoring rate when we aren’t taking wickets. Even though we were striking early, we were never going at less than four runs an over, so one partnership is always going to put you on the back foot.
“On the batting side, I thought we showed a bit more resolve and were at the crease for a bit longer. It was good to see Billy Godleman play himself back into form with some runs, Leus du Plooy in the first innings, and Matt Critchley also batted well.
“However, the biggest thing is to learn how to win again, we have to get over that line.”