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Warwickshire are county champions

6th September 2012

• Warwickshire crowned county champions after victory
• All the action and gossip from around the grounds
Watch all the latest highlights from the County Championship

1.39pm: Chris Wright splattered the stumps three times in 25 minutes of the afternoon session to seal an innings victory and their seventh Championship title, writes Richard Gibson.

My match report will be on the site shortly…

1.37pm: WARWICKSHIRE ARE COUNTY CHAMPIONS!

1.07pm: Warwickshire have made unflustered progress in their quest to take the eight wickets that would seal the County Championship today, writes Richard Gibson.

They have taken five of the total required on another pleasant morning at New Road. Regular breakthroughs have got them into the tail, with only Moeen Ali, previously on the staff at Edgbaston, displaying the kind of resistance required to prolong Worcestershire’s agony. Moeen is unbeaten on 65 at lunch, which the relegation-threatened hosts took on 197 for seven.

Requiring a further 311 runs just to make the Division One leaders bat again, Worcestershire resumed the third day on 100 for two but had lost captain Daryl Mitchell and Netherlands international Alexei Kervezee in just over half an hour of play.

Mitchell was unfortunate to witness the ball roll back into his stumps from a defensive jab while Kervezee was pinned lbw by an inswinger, the double increasing impressive eft-armer Keith Barker’s match haul to eight.

New-ball partner Chris Wright castled Joe Leach a quarter of an hour later and Boyd Rankin proved he was champing at the bit by the time he was belatedly introduced to the attack for the first time in the contest. Having been brought on for the 85th over Warwickshire sent down, his pace and bounce accounted for youngsters Brett D’Oliveira and Ben Cox in quick succession.

1.06pm: Kent have taken a grip on events in Canterbury courtesy of an unbroken fourth-wicket stand worth 115 thus far, writes Mark Pennell.

The partners Brendan Nash and Sam Northeast have batted throughout the opening session to take their side in at the lunch interval on 174 for three – for a commanding overall lead of 235.

Derbyshire have toiled manfully for a breakthrough, but neither Kent player has looked particularly troubled in posting their three-figure stand. Northeast
went past 50 for the seventh time this summer from 132 balls and with six fours, while Nash has kept him company for 120 minutes for his unbeaten 47.

The pair have a long way to go to break Kent’s record fourth-wicket record against Derbyshire, however. That stands at 368, set by Graham Cowdrey and Aravinda de Silva at The Mote in Maidstone in 1995. Oddly enough, I was there that day too.

12.17pm: There’s been collective lump-swallowing at Hove, reports Richard Rae.

Murray Goodwin’s final innings for Sussex at Hove came to an end on 77 – his highest score of the season - and as he walked off, waving his bat to all parts as he received a standing ovation, his children Jaydon and Ashton ran out to accompany him off the ground. His parents have come over from Australia, and there’s to be a presentation during the lunch interval.

His dismissal was one of five Sussex wickets to have fallen this morning, rather unexpectedly after Goodwin and Chris Nash had looked in no trouble for an hour. Nash went first, edging an Alfonso Thomas delivery which left him. Matt Prior ran himself out after a misunderstanding with Goodwin, who soon afterwards went in the same manner as Nash. Thomas, bowling splendidly from the Cromwell Road End, has also picked up the wickets of Michael Yardy and Ben Brown, and so has himself a deserved ‘five-fer’ – deserved for his persistence and consistency, as much as the movement he has found.

Still, Sussex lead by 343, with three wickets remaining. Perhaps we will be finished today after all.

11.40am: Drinks at Canterbury, cups of tea in the press box and isotonic intake out in the middle, writes Mark Pennell. Kent have made a positive start moving on to 116 for three, adding 57 runs in the first hour of day three without further loss.

Sam Northeast has reached his fifth half-century of the championship summer from 132 balls and with six fours, meanwhile Derbyshire await an ECB ruling over the rights and wrongs of Kent’s decision to include England off-spinner James Tredwell.

11.15am: Warwickshire are a quarter of the way through their day’s requirement after just 33 minutes on the field at New Road, writes Richard Gibson.

Two of the eight wickets they need to be crowned champions have already fallen – Worcestershire captain Daryl Mitchell unfortunate to witness the ball roll back into his stumps from a defensive jab and Alexei Kervezee pinned lbw by an inswinger. Left-armer Keith Barker was the bowler on both occasions, taking his match haul to eight.

In case, the match situation needs any clarification: Worcestershire must score 411 to make the Division One leaders bat again, and with more than five-and-a-half sessions remaining are 133 for four.

10.56am: Kent are underway in their second innings on day three in Canterbury, but we have controversy here as the home side resume on 61 for three and an overall lead of 120, writes Mark Pennell.

To strengthen their hand in this match the promotion-chasing hosts have taken their option of calling in England off-spinner James Tredwell, who appeared in last night’s ODI against South Africa in Nottingham, and have jettisoned 20-year-old stand-by spinner, Adam Riley – who appeared in the opening two days of this game.

Derbyshire’s players andofficials are clearly unhappy about the late move – they were told at 9.55am - and it is alleged they had been told by match umpires, Nick Cook and Neil Mallender, that Tredwell would play no part in this game if he took part in the England day-nighter at Trent Bridge.

Derbyshire have contacted the England and Wales Cricket Board for an immediate ruling on the matter, but in the meantime, the hosts have moved on to 75 for three – a lead of 136.

10.31am: Following the discussion regarding the likelihood of Sussex opener Chris Nash getting an England call-up next week, Richard Rae spoke to both Nash and his county coach Mark Robinson at the close of play last night.

Nash, who completed his third first class century of the season yesterday, is an amiable and approachable soul who said what you would expect – every English county cricketer sets out dreaming about playing for his country and that he was no exception.

Robinson was more forthright and revealing. “Sometimes Nashie is an underestimated cricketer – he’s a very hard-working professional, very honest, and when you’re very hard-working and have small goals, it can help you achieve big goals. He’s someone they should consider, he offers a lot to any team because he bats, bowls and fields very well.”

RR: But do you think they will consider him?

MR: “I don’t. It’s dangerous because we’re getting into areas where I might have to criticise another player, but look, any player has to score a consistent amount of runs, at the right time, to demand consideration, and arguably Nashie hasn’t quite done that. What he is is a very fine county player, who just needs to be a tad more consistent.

“When he plays the way he did today, with the right tempo and mix of attack and defence, he’s at his best. If he could just be a tad more consistent in that respect - but he’s a fine player, and he’s got 20 wickets with his off-spin, he plays one-day cricket well, so depending what a team needs,... I know he is on their radar to an extent, maybe this winter he’ll be with the Lions or something as a next stepping stone. But he’s an asset to us, I know that.”

Nash has certainly put Sussex in a dominant position here at Hove, where they lead Somerset by 273 with eight second innings wickets in hand. It’s almost certainly all in vain in terms of catching Warwickshire at the top of the table, of course, but there’ll be another sizeable crowd on another gorgeous south coast day hoping to see Murray Goodwin, 51 not out overnight, mark his final innings at Hove with a century before Sussex declare sometime before tea.

10.20am: Welcome to the county cricket live blog for the latest round of Championship action. Our writers will be here with all the day’s play shortly. Richard Gibson will be taking in Worcestershire v Warwickshire, Richard Rae is watching Sussex v Somerset at Hove, while Mark Pennell will be at Canterbury for Kent v Derbyshire. If you’re here before them, you can have a read of yesterday’s match reports. Enjoy.


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