Surrey v Nottinghamshire
Ricky Ponting made a dour 29 in his penultimate first-class innings as Surrey were bowled out by Nottinghamshire for 198 on the opening day of the LV= County Championship Division One clash at the Kia Oval.
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Choosing to bat on a dry and sluggish pitch which will surely take more spin as the game goes on, Surrey would have wanted far more from their first innings before watching Notts put their effort into perspective by reaching 50 for no wicket in reply in an hour's batting before the close.
Without a classy 57 from opener Rory Burns and a fighting 65 not out from wicketkeeper-batsman Steven Davies, who fought a lone battle in the second half of the innings, Surrey would have been in even deeper trouble.
Burns, Surrey's leading championship run-getter this season, included seven fours in his 115-ball knock - several of them spanking drives down the ground against the Notts seamers.
But, once he had fallen to the last ball before lunch, unluckily thin-edging an attempted leg-glance off Harry Gurney to keeper Chris Read, only Davies found anything like the same fluency.
Arun Harinath and Vikram Solanki both went cheaply in the morning session - Harinath smartly held low down by Samit Patel at second slip for four pushing at Ajmal Shahzad, and Solanki beaten by Andre Adams' off-cutter and leg-before for eight.
Ponting, on 23 at lunch after a 51-run stand with Burns, had struggled through 68 balls, hitting just three boundaries, when he played defensively forward to Patel's left-arm spin and was comfortably caught off bat and pad by Riki Wessels at short leg. He retires from first-class cricket at the end of this match, although plans to play on in Twenty20 matches.
Zander de Bruyn was caught behind off Shahzad for 16, swishing weakly at a wide one, and Surrey were 173 for six at tea when, on the stroke of the interval, Zafar Ansari was caught off the face of the bat at short leg for a tortured 41-ball seven as he tried to flick away a ball from left-arm spinner Graeme White.
Things got worse for Surrey almost immediately after tea when Gareth Batty departed for a duck nicking his third ball, from left arm paceman Gurney, to Read. And Chris Tremlett, having seen Davies through to a deserved 87-ball fifty, initially failed to respond to his partner's call for a single to short third man and was run out for nought at the bowler's end.
Jade Dernbach edged White to Read, propping forward, and Gary Keedy became Surrey's fourth lower order duck in a row when he was yorked eighth ball by Shahzad. Davies could only look on in bemusement, having faced 102 balls and hit six fours.
The Notts bowlers, who performed excellently as a unit, shared the spoils with Shahzad finishing with three for 43, Gurney two for 37, White two for 24 and Patel and Adams a wicket apiece.
In 18 overs' batting in the late afternoon sunshine, Wessels and Steven Mullaney then both played with great discipline to both score 22 not out and set the seal on a fine day's work for Notts.