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Recent Match Report – Notts vs Yorkshire Division 1 2021

Recent Match Report - Notts vs Yorkshire Division 1 2021

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Few players embrace county game like Lyth, whose innings leaves Notts chasing fourth-day victory

Nottinghamshire 296 (Clarke 109, Evison 58) and 42 for 1 require a further 132 runs to beat Yorkshire 73 (Evison 4-13, Fletcher 3-31) and 396 (Lyth 153)

“I wouldn’t be here playing four-day cricket if I didn’t want to play Test cricket again,” said Dawid Malan back in June. “I still feel like I’ve got a hell of a lot to give”.

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Malan’s ambition as he approached his 34th birthday had to be applauded – and he got his wish as he returned to the Test side soon afterwards. But what does that say about the County Championship, 2021-style, if some of the best players would not even be there if they were not wishing to be somewhere else? And Malan is not alone. It is just that not everybody states it so baldly. For lovers of the Championship, these are worrying times.

More pertinently, what does that say about a player like Adam Lyth, who is a year younger than Malan but who must know deep down that his England days have gone? Lyth still attracts honourable mentions from time to time – such has been the state of England’s top order, how could it be otherwise – but they have arisen more from a journalist’s desperation for a time-honoured intro than any real possibility that he adds to his six Tests after an absence of six years.

Somewhere between Malan, who had only been with Yorkshire for three months when he tacitly dismissed the intrinsic worth of the Championship, and troupers like Darren Stevens, who is playing deep into his 40s and who will feel bereft the day it all comes to an end, is Lyth.

It took him until his last innings to address a wretched season. He had last made a Championship fifty in April and his recent run of scores looked like a couple of credit-card PINs. He would have been dropped for the final Championship match of the season if Gary Ballance had not announced himself too ill to take part on the first morning. The decision by Yorkshire’s coach, Andrew Gale, would have been a reluctant one, arguably a belated one, because nobody rates Lyth more highly. Famously, he once suggested he had more natural talent than Joe Root.

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