Posted by Tony Hutton
For many years now the cricket ground at Kibworth in Leicestershire has been on my wanted list.
Today, Wednesday 31st May was the day, with an excellent weather forecast, to make the long journey of over two hundred miles there and back. Fortunately the M1 traffic was not too bad and we got to this pleasant ground south east of Leicester in good time for the eleven o'clock start. Leicestershire second eleven were entertaining Yorkshire second XI and this was day two of a three day championship game.
The facilities in the modern large pavilion were first class and lots of room for parking so we were soon in position on the boundary edge in glorious sunshine for what proved to be an excellent day particularly for Yorkshire. They had been bowled out by Leicester for 270 yesterday and the home side were struggling somewhat at 36-3 overnight. Initially some good resistance from Fazackerly, who had taken 6-53 yesterday, kept Yorkshire at bay with a hard earned fifty and he shared a partnership of eighty with Sayer, which took Leicester to 116-4.
After that things rather fell apart and with veteran Charlie Shreck unable to bat due to injury they collapsed to 158 all out. Will Rhodes finished off the tail and ended with the best bowling figures of 4-23 helped by four good catches by wicker keeper Read. After a cloudy period during the early afternoon the sun re-appeared for the last half of the day and the Yorkshire opening pair of Harry Brook and Johnny Tattersall really did make hay while the sun shone.
Brook started slowly and Tattersall out scored him briefly at the start of the partnership but then once Brook really got into his stride he completely dominated the proceedings with an absolute vintage innings. He played shots all round the wicket and the majority of his runs came in boundaries, dominating the strike by often taking a single off the last ball of the over. Tattersall too played his part and good to see him captaining the team after having his very short term contract extended to the end of the season. The partnership raced past a hundred and then on to two hundred a tremendous achievement for these two young men.
Eventually Brook was the first to go having excelled with the square cut, the extra cover drive and pulls through mid wicket, he was lbw to Raine for 127 out of a partnership of 218. This was one of the best innings I have seen for some time and although the bowling was not of a very high standard, without the injured Shreck, I am sure we will hear a lot more of Harry Brook in the near future.
His partner Tattersall also reached his century before the close and looks a quality player as he has suggested with his performances for Harrogate and Lincolnshire already this season.
Tattersall was able to declare the following morning on 293-4 leaving Leicester the impossible task of chasing a target of 400 plus to win. Leicester put up a slightly better show with good innings by Ali and wicket keeper Swindells, but Carver's 6-53 saw Yorkshire comfortably home to win by 182 runs.
A really memorable day and well worth the effort to drive all that way. The Yorkshire team also had a marathon journey awaiting in their luxury coach all the way to Taunton for Friday's Trophy semi-final against Somerset.