Derbyshire’s fifth game of the LV County Championship campaign comes after a ten-day break since their last match and sees them welcome Worcestershire to the Incora County Ground.
Heritage Officer David Griffin previews the match and looks at the statistical highlights of the past.
The sides met twice in 2021, with the game at Derby in April ending as a draw, whilst Worcestershire won the return at New Road in late May, a game which saw spectators return to the county game for the first time since 2019.
This game will be the 150th scheduled between the two sides, the first also taking place at Derby in 1899 when the match was drawn.
Derbyshire have won 48 matches, Worcestershire 45 with 56 draws, two of which were completely abandoned, at Chesterfield in 1946, and Worcester in 1969.
Derbyshire best innings total of 513-8 came in their innings and 234 run win at Chesterfield in 1933 when Stan Worthington made 200* before leg-spinner Tommy Mitchell weaved his magic taking 5-20 and 6-44.
Worcestershire’s best remains 560 at Kidderminster in 1993, an innings dominated by Graeme Hick’s 173. The home side won by nine wickets despite Kim Barnett’s second innings 168 which occupied almost seven hours.
Derbyshire’s players have scored 47 hundreds against Worcestershire, Chris Adams, Kim Barnett, Wayne Madsen and John Wright all making three, although Billy Godleman made the highest individual score of 204 at Derby in 2016.
Wayne Madsen could join a select band of Derbyshire cricketers who have scored 1,000 first class runs against Worcestershire; Barnett, Arnold Hamer, Derek Morgan, Denis Smith, Harry Storer and Les Townsend have all made it past the 1,000-run mark – Madsen’s tally stands on 909.
Walter Sugg is the only Derbyshire player to score a hundred before lunch against Worcestershire, making 102 at Derby in 1899, while Steffan Jones’ 86 at Worcester in 2010 remains the highest individual score by a Derbyshire number eleven.
No Derbyshire player has managed the feat of a hundred in each innings against these opponents, although Peter Bowler came close at Derby in 1992 when he scored 91 and 112. In that same fixture, there were three Derbyshire centurions for the only time against Worcestershire, Adams and Steve Goldsmith being the other two.
Derbyshire’s highest partnership against Worcestershire is 283, for the first wicket by John Wright and Barry Wood at Chesterfield in 1981, although the best at Derby is 251 for the third wicket by Godleman and Madsen in 2016.
The rare feat of a century opening partnership in each innings has only been performed twice in Derbyshire’s history, the first by Wood and Wright at New Road in 1980 when they put on 114 in the first innings and followed it with 131 second time around. Iain Anderson and Barnett, against Kent at Chesterfield in 1983 are the other pair.
Last wicket partnerships over one hundred are also rare – just six for Derbyshire – with the second best being the 123 added by Tim Groenewald and Jones at Worcester in 2010.
With the ball there have been three centurions – Tommy Mitchell (104), Les Jackson (102) and Cliff Gladwin (100) – all took a century of Worcestershire wickets, with Derbyshire bowlers taking five wickets in an innings on 90 occasions. Gladwin’s 9-41 at Amblecote in 1952 are the best innings figures, although Mitchell’s ten five-fors are the most.
The rarer ten wickets in a match has been performed 15 times, with Bill Bestwick, Gladwin and Mitchell all managing it three times. The best match analysis, however, is the second-best in the county’s history; only Bill Mycroft’s 17-103 in 1876 has bettered Gladwin’s remarkable 16-84 at Amblecote in 1952.
Gladwin’s equally-celebrated new-ball partner, Les Jackson took the only two hat-tricks, at Kidderminster in 1958 and Derby in 1960, although instances of taking three wickets in four balls is even rarer than hat-tricks, and Derek Morgan performed this feat at Derby in 1954.
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