Will Macpherson

Author's details

Name: Will Macpherson
Date registered: August 10, 2015
URL: http://www.theguardian.com/sport/series/county-cricket-live-blog

Latest posts

  1. County cricket: Somerset off the mark, Middlesex win thriller – as it happened! — July 6, 2017
  2. If the ball is anything to go by we could be tickled pink by cricket day-nighters | The Spin — June 20, 2017
  3. County cricket: James Vince pushes England case with Hampshire century — April 21, 2017
  4. Joost van der Westhuizen, South Africa rugby great, dies aged 45 — February 6, 2017

Author's posts listings

Jul 06

County cricket: Somerset off the mark, Middlesex win thriller – as it happened!

Surrey’s Rory Burns put in an incredible performance with the bat at the Oval, while Somerset thrashed Yorkshire

6.24pm BST

That seems as good a time as any to wrap things up. Thanks for much for your company, it’s been a brilliant four days, again full of great cricket. Hat tip to Rory Burns and Sean Dickson for their batting feats, and Middlesex, Somerset (particularly Somerset) and Durham on their remarkable wins. Here’s the scores:

Division One:

6.10pm BST

With four overs remaining on the second day, Sussex are 54 for one, having lost Chris Nash to Clint McKay, and lead Leicestershire by 35.

5.26pm BST

I will leave the blog whirring away as Sussex are currently batting against Leicestershire. Looks like comments are still down unfortunately.

5.25pm BST

Well Rory Burns is a tired boy. What an effort from him.

4.55pm BST

Right, off to talk to Burns! Speak shortly…

4.52pm BST

Wahoo! Take a bow Rory Burns. Surrey’s lead means they can shake hands. That is that. Pitch was very boring, Burns was very good. Hampshire take 12 points to Surrey’s 10.

4.51pm BST

Surrey lead! We can finish very soon.

4.50pm BST

Thank the lord for that. I mean even Ben Duckett got a wicket.

4.49pm BST

Yep, these updates are coming through. Massive apologies for the technical problems we are having: they are nothing to do with me or, for that matter, county cricket.

4.48pm BST

Leicestershire all out for 281, a lead of 19.

4.46pm BST

We’ve been having technical difficulties across the site. Apologies for this – looks like we might be back.

4.45pm BST

Sounds like Ben Duckett has a wicket at Beckenham! Northeast the unfortunate/embarrassed batsman.

4.40pm BST

There’s six of them! Roy tracks Crane and we are not far off..

4.39pm BST

Surrey need 20 runs in the next 10 minutes and then we can all shake hands and go home.

4.32pm BST

So Surrey are 28 behind. I would suggest they want to get 29 in the next 20 minutes, because then they can shake hands 10 minutes earlier.

4.28pm BST

The ball that got Burns was rancid: an offie from round the wicket that pitched outside his leg stump turned a bit and took his pad on the way through to bowling him, by the looks of things.

4.27pm BST

Scores level at Arundel, where Leicestershire are nine down.

4.21pm BST

So he’s been bowled by Ervine’s offies! Faced 535 balls acros 12.5 hours and has surely saved the game for Surrey. A quite extraordinary effort.

4.17pm BST

Rory Burns is out!

4.12pm BST

Seldom seen lower key Championship cricket than what’s happening at the Oval right now.

4.02pm BST

Players are on their way back out for the final 50 minutes or hour or whatever at the Oval. Burns has 68, Surrey are 39 behind.

3.58pm BST

Probably worth mentioning that Leicestershire are 240 for eight, and 22 behind Sussex, at tea at Arundel.

3.57pm BST

Looks like there are some issues with comments, and looks like it might be site-wide. Apologies for that. Perhaps Rory Burns has broken the Guardian?

3.52pm BST

Aggghhhh what a game! Rankin bowls a half-volley to Murtagh and he drills him through cover and they get back for the three they need! Middlesex win by one wicket! They take 22 points, Warwickshire get six. That’s Middlesex’s second win of the season. Extraordinary. Warwickshire are starting to look a long way adrift at the bottom… 17 points (I think) the margin between them and Somerset.

3.48pm BST

End of Clarke’s over, Middlesex need three.

3.47pm BST

Middlesex need 4.

3.43pm BST

Rikki Clarke to Helm – single through the offside. Murtagh on strike. Six to win…

3.42pm BST

Wicket! Rayner. Is. Gone. He was plumb to Rankin for15. Middlesex still need seven… Murtagh in, but Helm on strike.

3.41pm BST

Tea! Without me even noticing, they are going off for tea. They will return in 20 minutes for either 50 minutes, or an hour’s play, depending on whether Surrey lead. Burns has 68, Surrey are 126 for two and Surrey trail by 39.

3.40pm BST

Single. Middlesex need 7…

3.38pm BST

Four for Helm! Middlesex need eight…

3.36pm BST

Two from Clarke’s over, and Middlesex need 12…

3.32pm BST

Helm has just cut Jeets for a delightful four and Middlesex need 14!

3.29pm BST

Farce of final day at Beckenham complete as Adam Rossington comes onto bowl and Alex Wakely takes the gloves #bbccricket

3.28pm BST

19 required for Middlesex. It looks tense. Very tense.

3.26pm BST

For those of a west country disposition.

Bowlers were on today!#WeAreSomerset #YORvSOM pic.twitter.com/vfhRozvmPZ

3.25pm BST

15 minutes until tea here at the Oval, and Burns has been at the crease for 12 hours. He has 61 and is batting with his great mate Roy now.

3.23pm BST

They have done it. What a chase! They are off the bottom! Pringle finishes the job with a six (he made 62), while Burnham ends 93 not out.

3.21pm BST

Patel gets Higgins caught at short leg! 24 to win and it’s numbers 9, 10 and 11 who have to do it!

3.20pm BST

One from the over, and Middlesex need 24.

3.17pm BST

Holland has gone bang, bang! Borthwick leaves one and is bowled! must have nipped back. Odd. Surrey 109 for two, still 56 behind. This game isn’t getting interesting, is it?

3.16pm BST

So another over done at Edgbaston, where Middlesex need 25 to win.

3.15pm BST

Wicket! Stoneman has gone for 47, lbw to Holland. Looked out. It’s largely irrelevant. Burns has 61.

3.12pm BST

Durham need just 30 more…

3.10pm BST

Another over down at Edgbaston, where Middlesex are seven down and need 30 to win.

3.06pm BST

Rayner’s just guided Rankin down to third man for four and Middlesex are 203 for seven, requiring 31 more

3.04pm BST

500 deliveries in the match for Burns… Approaching 12 hours at the crease. Still not left the field.

3.03pm BST

Trouble at Yorkshire.

Andrew Gale has revealed Harry Brook has a suspected broken right hand suffered in nets this morning. Plunkett and Sidebottom scans in am

3.01pm BST

Durham require 59 to win, with six wickets in hand.

3.00pm BST

Sean Dickson made it 60, but is out now. Holden got ‘im. Not much else on that game now, and there hasn’t been for some hours. Kent are 108 for two.

2.56pm BST

Middlesex lose Harris with 41 required. Rayner joins Higgins… Three wickets stand.

2.50pm BST

Here’s the end up at Scarborough.

An unbelievable effort from Somerset today!!#YORvSOM #WeAreSomerset pic.twitter.com/ZaH6hlPPCH

2.45pm BST

Oh wow. Dickson is 49, by the way.

BOTH BATTERS ENJOYING AN ICE CREAM at drinks! What flavour lads? @CountyChamp #KENvNOR

2.43pm BST

Fifty for Rory Burns! Cries of catch, but it lands safe and Burns rolls on. The #BansteadWall: 64 balls, eight fours. Since lunch, he’s been as fluent as at any stage in the match so far.

2.41pm BST

Somerset are off the mark! They have finally won. All it took was Lewis Gregory captaining them. Leach gets the last (Plunkett who’d been slogging), to finish with four, just like Coverton, who took nine in the match!

They take 21 points to Yorkshire’s four.

2.37pm BST

Middlesex need 49 to win. They have four wickets in hand…

2.35pm BST

Burns to 44, splitting the gap on the legside with precision. Lovely stuff. 68 for none.

2.28pm BST

Trescothick is doing short leg!

WICKET!!! Leach has 3!!! Coad hoists him to Adam Hose at cover and Yorkshire are 133/9!!#YORvSOM pic.twitter.com/oOr6OgXvdi

2.26pm BST

And after boshing a pair of sixes, Coad goes and Yorkshire are nine down! Somerset on the verge…

2.25pm BST

Big test for Middlesex now: Rikki Clarke gets Simpson, and they are six down, still needing 64. James Harris joins Ryan Higgins.

2.06pm BST

Qadri gets Colly and Durham are four down at Chesterfield. They still need 115…

2.05pm BST

So, I don’t want to alarm you, but Rory Burns nearly got out just now. It was a near miss on a run out, as you might expect, because Hampshire sure as hell have no other options for dismissing him. He nudged into the legside set off, and didn’t bother running his bat in, accepting his fate. The throw missed, and he picked up a pair of overthrows so all’s well that ends well and all that. 38 for none. He has 25.

1.59pm BST

96 for eight! Coverton gets Hodd and Somerset need two more wickets. Coverton has nine in the match…

1.57pm BST

Leach gets Rashid and Yorkshire are seven down!

1.53pm BST

The details of the Shiv Thakor situation are, err, spectacular.

1.50pm BST

Durham are three down, and still need 130…

1.49pm BST

Yorkshire are six down as Bressie goes for 25! Leach with the wicket… Somerset need four more. Yorkshire need loads of runs.

1.49pm BST

We are back underway at the Oval, and Rory Burns is still in. He is now officially the #BansteadWall

So #bansteadwall @willis_macp

1.05pm BST

Couple of scares for Surrey in that mini-session as Stoneman was dropped then edged wide of the slips for four. But Surrey are 11 without loss. 67 overs remain, they are 154 behind, and have plenty of batting to do.

1.03pm BST

So, Surrey are following on, it’s a belter at Edgbaston, Yorkshire are on the ropes at Scarborough, and Durham might snag a win too. It’s all very boring at Beckenham, mind. Here’s your scores on the final day.

Division One:

12.56pm BST

Middlesex are within 100… 98 required, but five down. Great finish in store there.

12.47pm BST

Stoneman’s been dropped second ball! Berg finds the edge, diving to his right first slip has missed him!

12.46pm BST

Yorkshire are 67 for five!

BOWLED HIM!!! Lyth is bowled by the superb Lewis Gregory for 37!! Yorkshire 67/5!!!#YORvSOM pic.twitter.com/hHZ0ZTBldx

12.45pm BST

Burns eases the first ball through point for one.

12.42pm BST

Compo out stumped! Oh dear … Middlesex are 122 for five. They need 112 more.

12.41pm BST

The follow on has indeed been enforced.

12.37pm BST

Mark Footitt, what have you done? He’s drilled Holland straight to midwicket and been caught. No one can quite believe it. 16 shy of the follow-on mark, so they will bat again.

Rory Burns carries his bat for 219 not out, his maiden double ton. He has not missed a ball in this match so far. Superb.

12.34pm BST

Leicestershire are 138 for four as Briggs gets Cosgrove for 41!

12.34pm BST

Middlesex are halfway there, four down…

12.31pm BST

Durham two down as Richardson goes to Tahir for 62. 95 for two, requiring 187 more…

12.31pm BST

Surrey are just 17 shy of avoiding the follow on…

12.29pm BST

Footitt’s just survived five balls from Holland.

12.20pm BST

Durham have lost their first. Qadri gets Steel and Burnham is in. 92 for one, need 191 more.

12.16pm BST

What a knock. He tracks Crane and flicks him through midwicket for four. Superb innings. 424 balls, that’s his 25th four and there was a six too. Still 36 required to avoid the follow-on. If he can do that, with just Footitt for company, then, well, I don’t know what. But it’ll be pretty special.

12.14pm BST

199 … laps fine, runs well. Field comes in now. Still 40 shy of follow-on.

12.14pm BST

Burns to 197! He’s found the gap at midwicket with a sweep…

12.13pm BST

And he’s turning singles down.

12.13pm BST

So Crane to Burns, on 193. Field spread.

12.10pm BST

Bowled him! Holland has left Virdi’s stumps in a right mess and out comes Noted Batsman Mark Footitt. Burns has 193. He has never made a double. Still 46 shy of follow on…

12.05pm BST

Yorkshire are 36 for four!!! Pepsi hooks Coverton for six but has been caught in the slips… Bressie in with a serious job to do.

12.01pm BST

And a wicket here at the Oval! Tom Curran has missed one from Holland has been bowled (stayed low?). Burns is 191 after reverse sweeping Crane for four then pulling him for six last over. 447 for eight and still 52 away from avoiding the follow on. Virdi in with Footitt next…

11.59am BST

Middlesex are four down! Stirling goes to Panayi, and Warwickshire have to favourites. 79 for four… 155 required.

11.57am BST

Northants are all out for 568! They trail by 133, and it doesn’t really matter.

11.51am BST

Wowzer, play that.

GONE!! Another brutal delivery from Craig Overton and a great take by Steve Davies! Brook goes for 0 and Yorkshire are 12/2#YORvSOM pic.twitter.com/G0xLtmJ5gF

11.50am BST

Yorkshire are three down! Coverton gets Brook (a snorter, caught behind) and Handscomb (lbw) in consecutive balls and Yorkshire are 12 for three. They need 337 to win, and Somerset are sniffing their first victory of the season.

11.44am BST

So Durham are 62 without loss and need another 220 for a remarkable win over indecently exposed Derbyshire.

11.39am BST

Oh dear…

Derbyshire CCC’s Shiv Thakor has been questioned by police over report of an indecent exposure. The club has suspended him on full pay #P2bD pic.twitter.com/Q0tDcwhBGb

11.37am BST

50 for Tom Curran! He’s played very nicely – brave last night, canny this morning. Fidel is steaming in at him and he’s taking him on. Gets there with two driven down the ground.

11.36am BST

You may have seen this last night but I feel it’s important to flag it again because Reasons.

The best celebration ever!!! @MattColes_90 @CountyChamp @kentcricket #slug pic.twitter.com/ZlSPOVlTJn

11.34am BST

Middlesex are three down … Barker gets Malan. They still need 180 to win.

11.33am BST

Yorkshire are one down! Gregory gets Lees and they are 3-1.

11.30am BST

One run in the first half-hour for Burns here. He’s not going to haul Lara down with an attitude like that!

11.23am BST

Well, well, well. Nicely done James Hildreth, who reaches his first century of the season. Then Gregory calls them in. 90 overs to do it, so the carrot has well and truly been dangled. Huge day in Somerset’s season.

11.20am BST

Northants have avoided the follow on!

11.18am BST

Hildreth has 97 … Somerset’s lead is 325.

11.14am BST

Here’s that drive I got a bit excited about.

The first boundary of the day and it takes @_TC59 to 1000 first-class runs in his career.

Many more to come, Tom! pic.twitter.com/icDxwispCu

11.14am BST

There are not very many people at the Oval today. Is there some other cricket happening?

11.09am BST

Fidel is bowling from the Vauxhall End and CurranT just played a straight drive that I want to put in a cab to St Pancras and take to Paris for a long weekend. He has 39.

11.07am BST

A wicket at Scarborough! Bressielad gets Hose caught in the cordon. 243 for four, the lead is 298. I wouldnae be batting too much longer if I was Somerset. Bosh 40, pull out.

11.01am BST

Abbott’s going to get us going.

10.58am BST

Here come cricketers at the Oval!

10.58am BST

Broadly, I agree. Contriving is great. I thought the end of last season was superb, and the piss-boiling it brought was even better. But in this instance, I think wouldn’t… A loss would really derail both sides’ promotion hopes and, given the long Champo break that follows this round, I don’t think it’s worth the risk.

@willis_macp I prefer “making a game of it” to “contrivance” and I also believe that it’s worth risking 5 points for the reward of 16

@willis_macp To elaborate a little, there’s far too much opprobrium attached to setting up matches. It’s one of proper cricket’s delights!

10.42am BST

Morning Stuie! Thanks for your daily tweets, they are most welcome.

@willis_macp loved the blog so far this season! Morning for last time for a while

10.42am BST

There couldn’t be a contrivance at Beckenham could there? Call me conservative (small c, please) but I don’t see much point: the two teams are too close in the table, and therefore have too much to lose. It’s also the T20 starting tomorrow, and a defeat would be a terrible way to bow out of Championship cricket for a while.

10.31am BST

Good morning and welcome to the final County Cricket – live! for a wee while, by my reckoning. The T20 Blast begins tomorrow, so the Championship disappears from view for a few weeks at about its halfway stage. Don’t worry, I’ll be back, said Macpherson with menace. Seems an apt moment to thank you all for your comments and clicks and all that – it’s been the blog’s busiest year ever.

Anyway, there’s cricket to be played. Here at the Oval, Surrey probably did enough to escape this game against Hampshire with a draw. Rory Burns is playing arguably the best innings I’ve seen this season against a very fine attack in sapping conditions. The pitch is pretty flat, so it’s been a mental and physical challenge, rather than a truly technical one. Still, he’s been superb. He has a way to get yet because the follow-on is yet to be avoided. 89 more runs to score for that. He’s never scored a double… The weather here is very nice right now (little bit muggy, if we’re being picky), but may get a little stormy later on.

Related: Rory Burns turns on the style to keep Surrey in the frame at The Oval

Continue reading…

Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/live/2017/jul/06/county-cricket-surrey-v-hampshire-and-more-live

Jun 20

If the ball is anything to go by we could be tickled pink by cricket day-nighters | The Spin

A visit to the Dukes warehouse reveals a lovingly crafted ball that could help light up the spectacle when English cricket steps out into the night

“New ball bowlers will look forward to bowling with this,” grinned Stuart Broad, just after zipping one past his best mate Luke Wright’s outside edge in a live demonstration on Sky last Friday. Broad was referring to is the pink Dukes ball, which he will use at Edgbaston when England play West Indies in a day-night Test in August, and in nine Championship games from Monday.

Related: Hail the Unbelievables! How Pakistan found cricketing redemption

Continue reading…

Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/20/ball-tickled-pink-cricket-day-nighters-dukes

Apr 21

County cricket: James Vince pushes England case with Hampshire century

• Hampshire 281-4 v Yorkshire
• Middlesex 255-1 v Essex; Lancashire 109; Somerset 153-8

On a day that began with all nine visiting captains opting to forgo the toss and stick the home side in – pre-empting bowlers’ dominance – it was prospective England batsmen making the grandest statements.

The stripling Lancashire captain, Liam Livingstone, impressed the onlooking chairman of selectors, James Whitaker, with his maturity – not to mention the audacity and outrageousness of his strokeplay – as he was last man out for 68 of his side’s 109 against Somerset, on a day when 18 wickets fell at Old Trafford. At Lord’s, Sam Robson and Nick Gubbins made centuries in an opening stand of 241 for Middlesex against Essex, watched by England’s head coach, Trevor Bayliss.

Related: Liam Livingstone: ‘I have always had that confidence that I could make it’

Continue reading…

Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/apr/21/cricket-roundup-liam-livingstone-lancashire-james-whitaker

Feb 06

Joost van der Westhuizen, South Africa rugby great, dies aged 45

• World Cup-winning scrum half had motor neurone disease since 2011
• Van der Westhuizen was admitted to hospital on Saturday

Joost van der Westhuizen, the South African Rugby World Cup winner, has died aged 45. The former scrum-half had been living with motor neurone disease since 2011 and was admitted to a Johannesburg hospital on Saturday morning.

The J9 Foundation, the charity founded by Van der Westhuizen in 2012, confirmed that he had died at home, saying in a statement: “It is with great sadness that we confirm the passing of Joost. He passed away in his home surrounded by his loved ones. He will be sorely missed.”

Related: Joost van der Westhuizen will be remembered for inspirational spirit and dignity | Robert Kitson

Related: Joost van der Westhuizen obituary

RIP Joost van der Westhuizen. An incredible player and fighter to the end. The first of the new age 9’s.

Continue reading…

Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/feb/06/joost-van-der-westhuizen-south-africa-rugby-great-dies