Rampant Richardson humbles Lancashire
Alan Richardson bagged a six-wicket haul as Worcestershire boosted their hopes of avoiding relegation and dented Lancashire’s title bid with a crushing 10-wicket win in the LV= County Championship match at New Road.
The 36-year-old former Warwickshire paceman claimed 6-22 as the hosts wrapped up victory before tea on the second day.
After dismissing the visitors for just 80, Worcestershire needed a mere five runs to send Lancashire crashing to their fourth defeat of the season.
Trailing by 76 on first innings, the shell-shocked visitors crumbled as Richardson took his bumper tally of championship wickets this season to 62.
It was Worcestershire’s fourth Division One triumph of the campaign and earned them sweet revenge for a 98-run setback against Lancashire at Blackpool last month. It was also the hosts’ first championship victory over Lancashire since 1995.
Mark Chilton - opening in place of Stephen Moore, who was absent to be with his expectant wife - Paul Horton and Karl Brown all fell to the on-song Richardson to leave Lancashire struggling on 37 for three at lunch.
Richardson’s quickfire trio of scalps had cost just eight runs in seven overs and left Tom Smith and Steven Croft with the daunting task of trying to pep up their side’s flagging fortunes.
Smith, however, was unable to respond to the challenge, becoming the first of two wickets in three balls for Richardson, who also dismissed Gareth Cross for his second duck of the match.
Kemar Roach, making his home debut, hastened Lancashire’s dramatic decline by ripping out Glen Chapple and Sajid Mahmood with successive deliveries.
Richardson, who took eight wickets in the match, followed up to oust Croft before Lancashire were all out in 30.1 overs, Kyle Hogg the last man to fall when he was bowled by Roach for 18.
A Daryl Mitchell boundary followed by a leg-bye was enough for Worcestershire to clinch victory inside three balls in their second innings.
The hosts, who had failed to beat Lancashire in their last 13 championship fixtures, began the day on 209 for six off 58 overs in reply to the visitors’ disappointing 161.
James Cameron, unbeaten with 87, fell just two runs short of what would have been the second first-class century of his career.
After putting on 97 in 23 overs with Ben Scott, who made 47, he was finally bowled by a delivery which kept low from Chapple, Lancashire’s most productive bowler with 4-58.
Opener Cameron’s four-and-a-half-hour innings contained 13 fours and spanned 207 balls.