Notts break Somerset hearts
Nottinghamshire snatched the LV= County Championship Division One title away from Somerset on a thrilling final day of the season.
Notts looked outsiders to win their first title since 2005 heading into the last day after the opening three of their match at Lancashire were ruined by rain.
But Chris Read’s side remarkably made up the six points they trailed Somerset, who could only draw at Durham, to finish level with the south west county and claim the title on account of having won more games.
Notts claimed maximum batting points, on the back of Adam Voges’ century, before they took three quick wickets to secure the remaining point they required as the game was drawn.
Somerset had the chance to clinch the title themselves when they dismissed Durham late in the day to leave them needing 180 from 17 overs.
But Marcus Trescothick’s side lost three early wickets to ruin their chase, before settling on a draw, which proved insufficient as Notts snuck home.
Notts declared on 400 for nine, just reaching the target they required thanks to a 10-run partnership between tailenders Darren Pattinson and Ryan Sidebottom. Earlier, Adam Voges cracked 129 and Samit Patel 96 off 91 balls.
Sidebottom then made the breakthrough with the ball, dismissing Karl Brown, before Andre Adams sealed the title by sending Mark Chilton and then Shivnarine Chanderpaul packing to leave the hosts 11 for three.
After a frustrating day in the field, Somerset eventually dismissed Durham for 320 in the evening session.
Michael Di Venuto was Somerset’s chief tormentor as he progressed his overnight 84 to 129 with a handful of handsome strokes.
Early wickets ensured the visitors were never likely to chase down their tricky target and the shook on a draw at 48 for three.
A stunned Yorkshire saw their title hopes dashed in 44 crazy minutes against Kent at Headingley Carnegie, when their last nine wickets crashed for 37 in the space of 55 balls.
They were routed for 130, which left Kent with 90 to make for victory - and they suffered a few scares on the way before winning by four wickets.
The win was not enough to save Kent, who were relegated alongside Essex, while Yorkshire’s only consolation was that they ended a splendid first season under Andrew Gale’s captaincy in third place in the table.
The chief destroyer for Kent was off-spinner James Tredwell, who included a hat-trick in his 7-22 return while paceman Dewald Nel claimed the three remaining wickets.
Warwickshire secured their Division One status with a comprehensive 10-wicket win over Hampshire at the Rose Bowl.
Chris Woakes caused the damage with 5-34 as Hants, resuming at the start of their second innings 85 behind, could only manage 132 all out. The visitors knocked off the 48 they required for victory in 16.2 overs.
In Division Two, Worcestershire pulled off a superb four-wicket victory over champions Sussex at New Road and then had to wait for confirmation of their promotion.
James Cameron and Moeen Ali, with 105 and 115 respectively, made light of their task in chasing 301 in 70 overs for their third win in the last four games, but celebrations were delayed for more than an hour until they heard that Glamorgan had failed to beat Derbyshire at the SWALEC Stadium.
Cameron, making a maiden hundred in his first match as an opener, and Moeen hammered 215 in only 35.4 overs for the third wicket before Worcestershire wobbled on the finishing stretch before reaching 306 for six.
Glamorgan’s hopes of promotion were dashed by Worcestershire’s win and then their failure to bowl Derbyshire out.
The Welsh county declared in their second innings on 269 for three, having added 177 in only 17.2 overs after it became obvious Worcestershire were going to win, to leave Derbyshire needing 160 in 38 overs.
Although the hosts reduced Derbyshire to 63 for five in the 22nd over, they failed to run through tail and the players shook hands with Derbyshire 123 without further loss.
Jigar Naik took four wickets as Leicestershire rounded off their season with a thumping 10-wicket victory over Northamptonshire at Wantage Road.
Northants collapsed to 198 all out as off-spinner Naik claimed 4-58 and 19-year-old seamer Nathan Buck took three wickets.
The visitors did have to bat a second time, but needing just a single Matt Boyce took one ball to seal the win with a boundary.
Gloucestershire suffered another alarming batting collapse to concede victory to Surrey by 10 runs at Bristol.
Set 261 to win in 74 overs, the home side appeared to be cruising at 216 for four with Chris Dent (94) and Hamish Marshall (51) well established.
But Marshall’s dismissal sparked a slide in which six wickets fell for the addition of just 34 runs as Gloucestershire were all out for 250.