Recent Match Report – Yorkshire vs Surrey 43rd Match 2022


Yorkshire 364 for 5 (Lyth 152*, Tattersall 104*) vs Surrey

Malan, Kohler-Cadmore, Root, Bairstow, Brook, Ballance, Willey, Duke, Rashid, Fisher, Revis, Coad. Not a bad Yorkshire XII. The only problem was that they were the players missing at Scarborough. Playing for England, injured, left out or on a pilgrimage to Mecca. The Yorkshire members making their annual trek to the coast with comparable devotion for the start of the Scarborough Festival feared the worst.

Perhaps such misgivings were partly why Adam Lyth, who lives just up the coast in Whitby, was netting on his home ground at an early hour. Lyth is always top of the bill at Scarborough. It was just that the support acts were missing. One look at the Yorkshire team sheet and he must have felt an onerous responsibility, especially with the Championship leaders, Surrey, in town.

What followed was one of the most redoubtable Championship innings of his career: 152 not out, an innings still alive at the close as he issued thumbs-up to all his mates in the crowd as he approached the pavilion. But then he stood back and beckoned because alongside him was Jonny Tattersall who had just played the innings of his life. Maiden Championship hundreds are special and Tattersall, whose career has never been secure and who has never been accused of over-confidence, was walking off with 104 to his name after a sixth-wicket stand of 239 in 62 overs, with power to add in the morning.

Lyth is 34 now, England ambitions long gone, but considering some of the top-order failures of recent vintage, on days like this it is hard to resist the notion that he deserved more than seven Tests. If anything was likely to dismiss him, it was fatigue as he edged Jamie Overton wide of slips late in the day. There was also a triple bat spin in his frustration at a rare play-and-miss at Joe Worrall in mid-afternoon. Otherwise, he drove with the brightness and clarity of phosphoric acid and pulled well when he chose to. He has 29 first-class hundreds now, and he marked his second at Scarborough by bringing one up in the grand manner with a straight six down the ground against the offspinner, Will Jacks.

His other alarming moment came shortly before six o’clock, with the second new ball two overs old, when he had to wave aside a steward, in fluorescent yellow tabard, who had decided to have a breather next to the sightscreen. Naturally, some of the crowd barracked, having warmed up their larynxes earlier by grumbling at the teamsheet and jeering at Surrey. (When they slow-handclapped Overton, who had been arguing with the footholds, Overton clapped back). Do not disturb the concentration of the Mighty Peanut at North Marine Road or condemnation will surely fall upon you.

With due respect, because he is a scrapping cricketer, what was not anticipated to the same degree was a most measured of maiden Championship hundreds by Tattersall, who was playing his first Championship match of the season after reclaiming his wicketkeeping spot from Harry Duke. Tattersall, who played a game on loan for Surrey last season, dealt intelligently with Scarborough’s steep bounce and played beautifully off his pads, batting within his limits with an abundance of commonsense. Not fashionable, but hugely effective. Duke, for all his promise, has had a trying season; it was a sound change in policy.

Surrey will insist that Tattersall was run out on 29, a direct hit at the non-striker’s end after Lyth had turned Jacks into the leg-side and the most beautiful sunrise over the bay will still not dissuade them of the fact. He was also badly dropped on 75, Jacks holding his head in his hands after spilling an edge off Worrall.

Lyth and Tattersall were also assisted by Surrey’s failure to lock on to a consistent, fuller Scarborough length – the ground slopes from sightscreen to sightscreen, although not as much as Hove, and the approach down the slope can be unsettling (they bowled 18 no-balls). The bounce can also be steep, at a decent pace. Surrey have appeared at the Festival regularly in recent years, but it was a novel experience for all this seam attack and it showed as they bowled too short.

All in all, Surrey did not resemble a side 16 points clear of Division One; Hampshire and Lancashire will be heartened. They rid an inexperienced Yorkshire top order from their presence within 34.1 overs, five wickets down for 125. But once Lyth and Tattersall took control, Surrey lacked discipline in wearying conditions. Ryan Patel’s medium-paced outswingers restored order with a negative line ahead of the second new ball, but as the crowd dispersed it failed to bring a breakthrough.

“I think we may have taken our foot off the gas a little bit and thought we may run through them quite quickly,” Overton said. “But that’s cricket. It can bite you on the backside.

Surrey’s failings might have been summed up in one Overton delivery, the clock by then having ticked around to 6.30pm, bodies aching, feet sore. Tattersall, on 99, with fewer than four overs to go, was presented with a leg-stump full-toss which he gleefully clipped away for four. Lyth, who had been emotionally engaged all day with the runs scored not just by himself but by his batting partners, a model senior pro, gave him a hug of celebration.

Foreboding had coloured Yorkshire’s morning. It was the only cloud in the sky. The media box was a greenhouse, capable of growing good-sized aubergines in a day. At least one statistician was known to be researching when Yorkshire had last fielded only three capped players. This undertaking had reached World War 2 only for Yorkshire to cap Jordan Thompson before the start of play and render the effort entirely meaningless. Not what was needed on the hottest day of the year.

A new-ball collapse darkened expressions. Absentees were listed. There may even have been some internal Yorkshire politics expressed. Pity Darren Gough, Yorkshire’s director of cricket, who should have arranged his Members Forum in the marquee not for the morning but after close of play.

Worrall, Surrey’s stand-out bowler with two for 61 from 22 overs, had George Hill caught at third slip for a duck six balls into proceedings before Tom Lawes trapped James Wharton lbw and Aaron Hardie had Will Fraine caught at third slip.

But Yorkshire always have talent coming through. Will Luxton, a member of the England U-19 side that reached the World Cup final in February, shone with promise on debut, loose but attractive, dropped on nought in the slips, caught in the slips off a no-ball on 17, but showing enough to make Yorkshire onlookers feel that in among the misjudgements there was a batter of rich potential.

Lyth stood back to let him take the applause at lunch for his 31 not out, only for him to fall to the first ball after the resumption. When he stood back for Luxton, it was a display of togetherness in adversity; when he let Tattersall lead the way, it was a gesture of immense satisfaction.

David Hopps writes on county cricket for ESPNcricinfo @davidkhopps


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