InMobi

County wrap: How the Aussies fared in the fifth round

The runs continued for Peter Handscomb at Lord's while Wes Agar helped Kent see off Nathan Lyon's Lancashire

Nathan Lyon (Lancashire)

3-50 (16) and 2-48 (22)

 

3no and 0no

Four matches into Lyon's spell with Lancashire and his team are bottom of division one without a win after falling to Wes Agar's Kent. Abysmal first-innings batting by the Red Rose county, who were dismissed for 92, left them relying on Lyon and English Test novice Tom Hartley spinning them to victory on a fourth-day pitch in Manchester. Australia's most prolific off-spinner took 2-48 in Kent's second innings, including a smart caught-and-bowled, but they were the only two wickets to fall on day four as Kent chased down the victory target of 164 with few alarms.

Lyon has taken multiple wickets in all five of Lancashire's completed bowling innings so far this season, with the Aussie veteran's skills on full display in the first innings as he coaxed Joe Denly into an ill-fated heave straight to skipper Keaton Jennings at long on before he had Grant Stewart smartly caught at slip by Luke Wells and Agar playing around a straight one. Unfortunately, Lancashire's batting unit gave him little to bowl at yet again, dismissed for fewer than 150 for the third time in a row.

Wes Agar (Kent)

4-35 (11) and 3-65 (21)

 

13

Agar helped lead Kent's first-innings rout of Lancashire for 92 at Old Trafford with his best first-class return so far in 2024, claiming the wickets of both Red Roses' openers Luke Wells and Keaton Jennings before adding New Zealander Tom Bruce first ball. The hat-trick didn't eventuate, but he later teamed up with 'keeper Harry Finch to remove No.9 Tom Bailey to finish with four wickets. It allowed Kent to enforce the follow on after posting 261 batting first, and the South Australian right-armer again led the way in the second innings with three wickets, including the scalps of Bruce and Bailey twice in the match.

Matthew Renshaw (Somerset)

1 and 35

After beginning the season with consecutive half-centuries, Renshaw's tough run of starts continued against Essex. While he's reached 30 in three of his past five innings since the Dukes ball returned, he's yet to raise the bat again since his second-round 87 in the first innings against Surrey. He fell to division one's current leading wicket-taker, Sam Cook, twice over the weekend; caught off a leading edge at mid-off in the first innings before being trapped lbw in the second. His side edged home in a low-scoring affair at Taunton, losing seven wickets in the fourth innings as they chased down 167 on day three.

Peter Handscomb (Leicestershire)

109

It was another fine weekend for the 33-year-old Victorian who this time managed to raise three figures after being run out on 99 in the round prior. Handscomb steered the Foxes out of early trouble with 10 boundaries in a superb 188-ball 109, helping his side recover from 4-83 to post 306 at Lord's when he was the last man out.

It was the right-hander's first century at Lord's and was the culmination of an exceptional past month with four consecutive scores over 50 (51, 68, 99 and 109) to see him averaging 70.60 for the season. While Handscomb also took a screamer high to his left at backward point to remove Sam Robson, the Middlesex opener's 162, and Leus du Plooy's 131, ensured the hosts replied with 8-407, with the match finishing in a stalemate as day four was abandoned due to rain without a ball bowled.

Marcus Harris (Leicestershire)

19

Harris edged two fours through the slips on his way to 19 off 21 in the first innings before being trapped lbw by Ethan Bamber trying to flick across the line. He then watched on as Victorian teammate Peter Handscomb, Sam Robson and Leus du Plooy hit centuries and with rain washing out days one and four completely, he didn't get another chance to bat. It brings to an end the left-hander's five-match stint with the Foxes in 2024, finishing with 352 runs averaging 58.66 from seven hits following his double-century in round three.

Did not play

Marnus Labuschagne (Glamorgan) – The Australian No.3 arrives in South Wales this month with former South Africa international Colin Ingram keeping his spot warm at Glamorgan until then.

Sean Abbott (Surrey) – The NSW allrounder departed for the UK over the weekend where he will be available for the two-time reigning division one champions' four-day and T20 matches in May and June.

Cameron Bancroft (Gloucestershire) – Bancroft's Gloucestershire had the week off, giving the West Australian a chance to reset after missing out over the past fortnight. The right-hander started the county season with 70 against Yorkshire but hasn't passed 32 in five innings since.

Chris Tremain (Northamptonshire): Northants has the bye this week but Tremain is on his way back home after completing his four-game stint with visa restrictions preventing a longer stay. The NSW quick is a popular figure at the Steelbacks but didn't enjoy the same impact with the ball as he did last year with just two wickets in five innings in 2024.

2024 Division One County Championship standings

Team
Matches played
M
Wins
W
Losses
L
Drawn
D
No results
N/R
Deductions
Ded.
Batting Bonus
Bat
Bowling Bonus
Bowl
Total points
PTS
1 Surrey Surrey SRY 7 4 1 2 0 0 16 19 115
2 Essex Essex ESS 7 4 1 2 0 0 15 18 113
3 Somerset Somerset SOM 7 2 1 4 0 0 16 19 99
4 Hampshire Hampshire HAM 7 2 1 3 1 2 10 13 85
5 Durham Durham DUR 7 2 1 3 1 1 9 11 83
6 Nottinghamshire Nottinghamshire NOT 7 1 2 4 0 0 11 20 79
7 Warwickshire Warwickshire WAR 7 0 2 5 0 0 19 18 77
8 Worcestershire Worcestershire WOR 7 0 2 5 0 0 13 17 70
9 Lancashire Lancashire LAN 7 1 3 3 0 0 8 16 64
10 Kent Kent KEN 7 1 3 3 0 0 7 14 61

M: Matches played

W: Wins

L: Losses

D: Drawn

N/R: No results

Ded.: Deductions

Bat: Batting Bonus

Bowl: Bowling Bonus

PTS: Total points

Australians in the 2024 County Championship

Durham: Ashton Turner (T20s only)

Essex: Daniel Sams (T20s only)

Glamorgan: Marnus Labuschagne

Gloucestershire: Cameron Bancroft, Beau Webster

Hampshire: Michael Neser, Ben McDermott (T20s only)

Kent: Wes Agar, Xavier Bartlett (T20s only)

Lancashire: Nathan Lyon, Chris Green (T20s only)

Leicestershire: Peter Handscomb, Marcus Harris

Northamptonshire: Chris Tremain

Somerset: Matthew Renshaw

Surrey: Sean Abbott

Sussex: Nathan McAndrew, Daniel Hughes