A solid second day sees Glos into strong position

27 September 2022

A Zafar Gohar-inspired Gloucestershire enjoyed an excellent second day at Headingley to heighten Yorkshire’s LV= Insurance County Championship relegation fears with two days of the summer remaining. 

The Pakistan left-arm spinner claimed five of seven morning wickets as Yorkshire, replying to a first-innings 190, slipped from 80 for three overnight to 183 all out.

In all, 13 wickets fell in a helter-skelter day, with already relegated Gloucestershire’s second innings slipping to 74 for five during the late afternoon. 

But they recovered either side of tea to close on 204 for six from 60 overs - a lead of 211 - thanks to sixth-wicket pair Ollie Price and belligerent Jack Taylor, who hit contrasting half-centuries and shared 122.

Yorkshire came into this game knowing a maximum of 10 points would seal Division One safety, given they held a 15-point cushion over second-bottom Warwickshire. They have so far only taken three.

The Bears are facing Hampshire at Edgbaston, where they declared on 272 for four. A win there, with 19 points, and a Yorkshire defeat here would spell disaster for Jonny Tattersall and co. Hampshire closed on four without loss.

Gohar struck with his first ball of day two - after a bright and breezy Yorkshire start - on the way to figures of five for 40 from 14 overs.

The county’s leading Championship wicket-taker in 2022 claimed a season’s best haul and took his tally to 43.

He benefitted from Yorkshire’s determination to play out their first innings on the front foot, with Tom Kohler-Cadmore for 46, Jordan Thompson and Ben Coad all caught when looking to attack.

That tactic worked for a while. Kohler-Cadmore and captain Tattersall took 32 runs off the first three-and-a-half overs of play, including 15 off one over from Tom Price.

But Gohar, whose solitary Test came early last year, quickly turned things around. 

The 27-year-old is amongst a rare breed of county overseas players who are available for the majority of the season, if not a full one.

He had Kohler-Cadmore caught at midwicket off a top-edged pull with his first ball for 46 - 121 for four in the 35th over, the eighth full over of the day - Harry Duke lbw, Tattersall caught at slip for 33, Jordan Thompson caught in the same position on the drive and Ben Coad caught cover off a miscue.

In between, Dom Bess was strangled off Ajeet Singh Dale’s seam before Steve Patterson flashed Tom Price to brother Ollie at second slip to wrap up the innings.

On his way to the crease at the fall of the ninth wicket (166 for nine), Patterson received a standing ovation from a crowd becoming increasingly nervous and a guard of honour from a Gloucestershire team becoming increasingly more confident.

Despite losing Chris Dent caught behind off Coad in the opening over of their second innings, the first after lunch, Gloucester’s confidence would increase further as they moved to 56 for one through Ben Charlesworth (25) and James Bracey (39).

But the pendulum swung again in the Headingley sunshine, with Bess sparking a collapse of four wickets for 18 inside six overs - 74 for five in the 26th.

Charlesworth was trapped lbw before Bracey offered a return catch. Coad also returned to get Miles Hammond caught in the gully off the shoulder of the bat before Matthew Fisher had Graeme van Buuren caught at second slip.

Gloucester reached tea at 110 for five, a lead of 117, with shoots of recovery coming from Ollie Price and Jack Taylor.

And those shoots grew in the evening. Taylor was the more aggressive as they left Yorkshire knowing they will have to chase the highest score of the fixture to win. And it will be come under immense pressure.

He clattered two sixes over long-on off Patterson and Bess before reaching his fifty off 59 balls, with more understated Price following him to the same milestone shortly afterwards off 120.

Taylor miscued a pull at Fisher to short mid-on to fall for an excellent 67 shortly before close came six overs early due to rain. Price was unbeaten on 54. 

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