Warwickshire v Nottinghamshire peters out into another rain-affected draw

The Edgbaston rain ended hopes of victory for Warwickshire and Nottinghamshire.The Edgbaston rain ended hopes of victory for Warwickshire and Nottinghamshire.
The Edgbaston rain ended hopes of victory for Warwickshire and Nottinghamshire.
Another stalemate landed in the ocean of early-season Vitality Championship draws as the match between Warwickshire and Nottinghamshire petered out at Edgbaston.

In reply to 400 all out, Warwickshire extended their first innings to 361, Jake Bethell posting a career best 93 (163 balls), before Nottinghamshire went in again and acquired 75 for one.

As soon as Warwickshire reached 251, which they did with some comfort with five wickets down, the match was consigned to a draw, the home side’s fourth in four championship matches and Nottinghamshire’s third in four.

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It was a dreary conclusion to a match which delivered some excellence - Ben Duckett’s double-century and the seam bowling of Olly Hannon-Dalby and Dillon Pennington – but was ultimately smothered by a docile pitch and the loss of more than a day to rain.

After Warwickshire resumed on the final morning on 175 for five, 76 short of the follow on figure, Nottinghamshire needed to strike quickly but Bethell and Danny Briggs (37, 79) were soon collecting boundaries. Stubborn batting, allied to a pitch which stubbornly refused to deteriorate, drew the sting of a seam attack which bowled with a quality during this match to suggest they will cause batters a lot of problems in more helpful conditions.

Bethell and Briggs added 85 in 23 overs to take their side to the requisite 251. Almost immediately, Briggs swatted Calvin Harrison to mid on where Freddie McCann entered the history books as the first former Papplewick & Linby CC player to take a catch as a substitute in first class cricket with the floodlights on at Edgbaston on a Monday.

Bethell’s classy and composed innings ended seven short of a deserved maiden century when he edged Olly Stone to give the former Warwickshire player his first wicket back on his old patch. Bowling remained a joyless assignment though and Michael Burgess (43, 63 balls) and Aamer Jamal (40, 46) added 71 in 15 overs before the latter hammered a return catch to Lyndon James.

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After Hasan Ali chipped James into the covers, Hannon-Dalby settled in with his customary aplomb before running out of partners when Burgess mowed to mid off. James’ analysis had been upgraded from 0 for 57 to three for 63 in 18 balls.

Nottinghamshire went into bat again at 2.54pm and filled the rest of a grey afternoon with batting practice. Duckett followed his 264-ball 218 with a six-ball seven when Hannon-Dalby trapped him lbw but Haseeb Hameed (41 not out, 69 balls) and Ben Slater enjoyed an outdoor net for the remaining two hours as the match fizzled out in a manner redolent of Nottinghamshire’s visit to Coventry in 1928 when they amassed 656 for three, four of the top five scoring centuries (only Arthur Carr missed out with a paltry 58) but their victory hopes were thwarted by a benign pitch, weather damage and obdurate batting by Warwickshire legends Tiger Smith and Bob Wyatt.