Steffan Jones leads Derbyshire fightback at New Road
LV COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION TWO, New Road: CLOSE OF PLAY, DAY THREE: Worcs 559-8, Derbyshire 295 & 183-3 Worcestershire 8 pts, Derbyshire 4 pts Match scorecard
Fast bowler Jones already has two first-class centuries to his name
Derbyshire last man Steffan Jones hit a belligerent 86 to give his side hope of saving the game against Worcestershire on day three at New Road.
But it could not prevent Derbyshire from being forced to follow on after being bowled out for 279.
And, despite Jones inspiring a better showing second time round, Derbyshire ended the day 81 in arrears, on 183-3.
Greg Smith was unbeaten at the close on 50, sharing an unbroken 73-run fourth-wicket stand with Paul Borrington.
Jones' effort was the highest score ever made by a Derbyshire number 11, the 36-year-old rugby-playing Welshman's 86 from 70 balls surpassing Nick Walker's 80 against Somerset at Derby in 2004.
The former Moseley winger is, admittedly, no ordinary number 11, having already hit two first-class centuries in a career that has brought him almost 2,500 first-class runs, at an average of over 20.
He showed that, hitting a six and 15 fours (four of them in one over from namesake Richard Jones).
And his 123-run stand with Tim Groenewald (35no) was only nine short of the county last-wicket record (132, by Alan Hill and Martin Jean-Jacques against Yorkshire in 1986) when he holed out on the cover boundary.
For Worcestershire it was an unexpected hold-up after further progress, spearheaded by Alan Richardson who took 4-72 to take his haul of first-class wickets for the season to 24.
With Derbyshire made to follow on 264 behind, Worcestershire looked for another big effort from their four main seamers.
But an opening stand of 51 by visiting skipper Chris Rogers (32) and Wayne Madsen (34) suggested it would be tougher for the bowlers second time round. And Worcestershire were to manage just three wickets by the close as Smith and Garry Park (34no) began to make the home attack feel the strain of a long day in the field.
BBC Hereford and Worcester's Trevor Owens gives his third day's verdict:
When Derbyshire were reduced to 172-9 in their first innings there was speculation that this game might have been all over on the third day.
But credit to Steffan Jones, who put bat to ball beautifully in making his 86, well supported by Tim Groenewald.
Anyone just looking at the scorecard might think Jones just thrashed at everything and got lucky, but he played some really good shots especially through the covers, looking anything but a traditional number 11.
The first hour on the final day could prove crucial as Worcestershire will want to break the Gary Park-Greg Smith partnership early to put added pressure on the Derbyshire middle order.
This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.