2016 was an amazing summer in the Specsavers County Championship - ecb.co.uk looked back at our top ten #ProperCricket moments:
Coming in at number ten, on the occasion of his Specsavers County Championship debut, Chad Barrett peeled off a hundred – his first in any kind of cricket!
Rob Keogh is best known for his skills with the bat so a first-innings haul of 9-52 was quite a remarkable return, easily surpassing his previous best of three-for. Northamptonshire’s spinners proceeded to take all 20 wickets in a comprehensive win over Glamorgan.
Going at eight an over against Stuart Broad is never easy but Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow put the Nottinghamshire attack to the sword in an audacious chase during the televised game at Trent Bridge. Bairstow’s outrageous slog-swept six off his England teammate was one of the shots of the season.
Chris ‘Buck’ Rogers has long been a County Championship legend. A five-county man with a career aggregate 25,470 first-class runs including 76 hundreds, he retired in style with 132 and 100* in his last professional game.
John Simpson hits a long ball, and his six against Somerset with just two balls of play remaining allowed Middlesex to chase down 302 inside 46 overs to seal a thrilling two-wicket win.
When 19-year-old Aneurin Donald strode out at number five for Glamorgan against Derbyshire in July not even he could have imagined what would happen next. He walked off with the small matter of 234 from 136 balls to his name, equalling the fastest double-century in first-class cricket, in his maiden Championship hundred.
Haseeb Hameed was arguably the find of the season, his twin tons against Yorkshire was a Roses first for a Lancastrian, he was also the youngest to post two hundreds in an English first-class match. A winter with England and a Test match debut soon followed. Not bad for a 19-year-old!
Batting at five was ‘nose-bleed’ territory for Yorkshire’s Tim Bresnan if some of the media were to be believed. With all to play for in the decisive final match of the season Big Bres took his promotion firmly in his stride and played the innings of his life, 142 not out. He shared a nerve-wracking tenth-wicket stand with Ryan Sidebottom to clinch a vital bonus point.
James Hildreth hit an heroic 135 in Somerset’s must-win final game of the season – with a broken ankle. Despite struggling to walk and batting with a runner for most of his innings, the 32-year-old faced 233 balls, hitting 17 fours and a six, and shared a stand of 269 with Chris Rogers (132), a Somerset record for the third wicket against Notts.
Middlesex won the County Championship for the first time since 1993 when a Toby Roland-Jones hat-trick sealed a 61-run win over Yorkshire at Lord's. Roaring in from the pavilion end in front of a record Lord’s crowd the Middlesex paceman bowled Ryan Sidebottom to seal the title amid huge celebrations.
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