Glos Make Light Work of Glamorgan to Claim Victory

15 September 2021

It took Gloucestershire a mere 78 minutes to polish off Glamorgan on the fourth and final day of their LV= Insurance County Championship Division 2 match at Sophia Gardens and head home with 22 points to move into second in the table.

The Welsh county resumed on 57-6, still 43 runs behind the visitors, and they were obviously intent on not falling to a third successive defeat by an innings. The overnight batsmen Dan Douthwaite and Andrew Salter didn’t hang around as they attempted to close the gap and force Gloucestershire to bat again.

Salter immediately attacked the visiting hero of the previous day, Zafar Gohar, and picked up 10 runs in the opening over of the day. He took six off Ryan Higgins next over and seven off Zafar’s second to give his side an impressive start.

But his flourish was all too brief and Zafar took his fourth wicket of the innings in the 32nd over when he trapped Salter LBW for 19. A mere 14 balls later, Ruaidhri Smith became his fifth victim as Glamorgan slumped to 94-8.

Smith attempted a reverse sweep off the left arm spinner and found himself bowled around his legs having added only four runs. Now it was just a case of whether or not the home side’s tail to haul them over the line to prevent another embarrassing innings defeat.

Douthwaite was the next to fall, bowled by Higgins as he became the Gloucestershire seamer’s 50th championship victim of the summer, and that left Timm van der Gugten and Michael Hogan needing to score eight runs to make Gloucestershire pad up again.

To their credit, they put on 22 for the final wicket, the third highest partnership of the innings as Glamorgan moved on to 124. Zafar finally removed van der Gugten to end with 6-43 from 18 devastating overs, although not before the home batsman had hit him for two big sixes.

On one of those he was caught by Higgins as he ran towards the rope, but then failed to stop. When it happened again, Higgins took a wonderful catch and threw it over his shoulder for Graeme van Buuren to complete the dismissal and leave Gloucestershire with a target of 15 runs to win the game.

Glamorgan opened with two spinners, Salter and Kiran Carlson, and it took nine balls for skipper Chris Dent and Miles Hammond to complete the triumph at 11.48am.

Interim Head Coach, Ian Harvey said:

“We were hoping for a quick finish, but we spoke about being prepared to work hard even into the afternoon. We have been prepared to do that throughout the season and a lot of our games have gone down to the last session,” said Harvey.

“Credit to the players, they keep fighting and believing they can do it. It was great from our point of view it was over early. After the defeat last week the main thing for us was to turn it around. That’s something we have done all season and that was very pleasing.

“We spoke about partnerships all the way through and the boys played exceptionally well. Ben Wells came in at late notice and played very well and Tom Price was exceptional in helping us to get a lead. Sometimes you need a performance like that to kick-start something and it was a really good day for him.

“Zafar was outstanding and took advantage of the conditions. When you look at spinners around the country they do come into their own in the third and fourth days. That’s why we got hold of Zafar and he really showed what he could do in this game. It is not always going to spin, or be in your favour, but he played to the conditions and did that exceptionally well."

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