CricInfo Championship: Derbyshire v Warwickshire at Derby, 12-15 Sep 2001|
Derbyshire 1st innings:
RAIN HOLDS UP WARWICKSHIRE AT DERBYWarwickshire's hopes of promotion were once again hit by rain which wiped out almost all of the afternoon session at Derby.
Only eight balls were bowled before light rain drove the players from the field and shortly afterwards, the County Ground was hit by a violent storm.
Although the skies began to brighten by 3pm, it was clearly too wet for an immediate resumption and the umpires decided to take an early tea at 3.10 in the hope that conditions would improve.
Warwickshire must win the game to have a chance of going up and they cannot afford many more lengthy interruptions from the weather.
After losing three wickets in the morning, when the start was delayed by an hour, they added eight runs after lunch with Ian Bell driving Graeme Welch for four and Nick Knight edging Kevin Dean to the third man boundary.
That was the end of the action as the dark clouds rolled in to leave Warwickshire studying the forecasts for Friday and Saturday.
The start of the second day was delayed by an hour and more rain forced a second brief stoppage as Warwickshire moved to 61-3 at lunch in reply to Derbyshire's 106.
It certainly did not go according to plan for Warwickshire, who needed uninterrupted play to have a chance of banking some batting points but conditions again favoured the bowlers.
Another chilly and blustery morning meant there was some movement for Graeme Welch and Kevin Dean who struck with his first ball when Michael Powell was caught at short leg for one.
That brought in Mark Wagh who played elegantly from the start, easing the ball into gaps on both sides of the wicket, and he looked set for another commanding innings until he played across the line and was bowled by Welch for 30.
Nick Knight had struggled but David Hemp was the next to go, lbw to Dean as he went only half forward in the last over of the truncated session.
Charlie Dagnall and Dougie Brown bowled the home side out for 106 but openers Michael Powell and Nick Knight faced only four balls before the weather closed in.
Conditions improved enough for the teams to attempt a resumption at 4.45 but before another ball could be bowled, the rain returned and play for the day was abandoned shortly after 5.15.
What play there was belonged to Warwickshire and to Dagnall who took a career best 6-50 on only his second championship appearance of the season.
He bowled unchanged through the morning and into the afternoon to exploit movement off the seam and through the air under overcast skies and was backed up superbly by Brown who finished with 4-20.
But they were also helped by some limp batting from Derbyshire who collapsed from 57-3 to 68-8 in five overs.
Only acting captain Michael di Venuto threatened to deny Warwickshire after Powell won the toss and put Derbyshire in but after he had got to 36 with some fluent strokes through the offside, he was well caught by Trevor Penney, keeping wicket for the injured Keith Piper.
That sparked off the decline as Dagnall, in for the injured Vasbert Drakes, took three wickets in five balls and only the tail steered Derbyshire past their previous lowest score this season of 95 at Durham.
Derbyshire recovered to win that game but they have a lot to do here to deny Warwickshire, who must win to have a chance of securing promotion to Division One.
Derbyshire were bowled out for 106 in the 11th over after lunch but the rain arrived after only four balls of the Warwickshire reply.
Skipper Michael Powell took a single off the first ball from former Edgbaston all-rounder Graeme Welch who then had a confident shout for lbw against Nick Knight turned down before heavy drizzle drove the players from the field.
But Warwickshire are already well placed to push on for the victory that would give them a chance of winning promotion thanks to some testing seam bowling and some frail batting.
Charles Dagnall, making only his second Championship appearance of the season, took a career best 6-50 and Dougie Brown picked up 4-20 in 14.2 overs after Powell had put Derbyshire in on an overcast day.
The ball seamed and there was also swing but there was nothing wrong with the pitch and, once again, Derbyshire's batting looked terribly vulnerable.
Only Michael Di Venuto offered any real resistance but he fell to a loose stroke which sparked a collapse in which five wickets fell for 11 runs.
The last two wickets added 38 runs to take Derbyshire past 100 but Warwickshire could not have hoped for a better morning and must now hope the weather does not spoil the bowler's good work.
Charlie Dagnall struck in his third over when he had Steve Stubbings lbw for eight and then Mathew Dowman was brilliantly caught at short square leg.
Dougie Brown pinned Chris Bassano lbw for one pushing half forward but Di Venuto played some handsome strokes until the wheels flew off in the 25th over.
From 57-3, Derbyshire crashed to 68-8 with Di Venuto starting the slide when he drove loosely at Brown and was caught behind by Trevor Penney for 36.
Dagnall then took three wickets in five balls and when Graeme Welch was caught behind pulling at Brown, Derbyshire were in disarray.
At lunch, they were 80-8 with Dagnall bowling unchanged to take 5-39 from 16 overs while Brown had figures of 3-6 from nine overs.
Date-stamped : 13 Sep2001 - 22:35