Jonathan Trott’s heroic resistance finally came to an end on 151 as Surrey wrapped up an opening Specsavers County Championship Division One victory against Warwickshire inside 13 overs on day four at the Kia Oval.
Chris Wright was bowled by Tom Curran for a duck after 55 minutes’ play to clinch an innings and one-run win for Surrey that launches their 2017 campaign in fine style and underlines their title aspirations. Curran ended with 4 for 88.
Surrey take 23 points from the win and, despite Trott’s rearguard action, the result had never been in doubt once Mark Footitt had taken six wickets in 32 balls on the second day as Warwickshire were blown away for 91 in their first innings.
Surrey captain Gareth Batty said: “We’re absolutely delighted with this win, and both Mark Footitt and Mark Stoneman will deservedly get the plaudits for their first innings performances, but we can get better and this is just one win.
"We are already looking forward to our next match, against Lancashire, and we will want to improve again on this. There are some seriously good teams in this division and, in my view, we have now got the best domestic first-class cricket in the world. The cricket I have seen played in the last two or three years has been the best of my time in the game.
“The fact that we were able to leave out two England players is a big statement, but we are continuing to build the group and, these days, it is more of a squad game. It could be me sitting out the next game, and we will definitely be leaving out more England-class players in future matches because people will need resting and we will always pick the right team for the surface. But we are not an 11-man team – it is all about the squad.
"Full credit to Trotty, who is still one of the best players in the country, but it was a very good lesson for our bowlers to see how someone that good goes about his business."
Trott’s 41st first-class hundred, and battling third day support from the likes of Ian Bell and Keith Barker, held Surrey up and took the match into its final day.
It was perhaps fitting that Footitt ended Trott’s epic knock, in the eighth over of the morning, with the former England batsman aiming a deliberate upper-cut at a short ball from the left-arm paceman and watching aghast as it ballooned into Dominic Sibley’s hands at third man.
Trott had batted for six hours and 44 minutes, facing 291 balls and hitting 19 fours, with his final boundary taking him to the 19th 150 of his prolific career.
Jeetan Patel had already gone by the time Trott fell, leg-before to Tom Curran from the last ball of the day’s fifth over. Patel had taken three fours from Footitt, including a sparkling extra cover drive, to move from his overnight 11 to 29 but had narrowly survived another lbw shout from the probing Curran earlier in the same over.
Curran finished off the Warwickshire second innings by wrecking Wright’s stumps to prevent Surrey from having to bat again. Footitt’s 2 for 104 gave him match figures of 8 for 118. Warwickshire take just a single point from what has been a sobering opening game of the season for them.
Warwickshire’s bowling coach, Alan Richardson, said: “You just can’t give sides the sort of start we gave them on the first couple of days. We’re pleased we showed some fight after that, and Trotty was superb, but this game is a wake-up call for us. We bowled well on the second day, too, but overall we’re disappointed and we have spoken about how we need to bounce back.”