Larwood The Pick Of The Notts
Bowlers In Worcestershire Encounters
Featured News | 27th May 2011
Sunday’s visit to New Road comes only four weeks after Worcestershire visited Trent Bridge, with Notts chasing down 262 on the fourth day to win by three wickets.
Since then Mick Newell’s team have drawn with Yorkshire and lost to both Sussex and Warwickshire to drop to fourth in the Division One table. Worcestershire have found life hard in the top flight, after winning promotion at the end of last season, and have been defeated in all of their opening six matches.
Two years ago, on their last visit to New Road, Notts had to make do with a draw after just coming up short in a thrilling run chase which saw them end on 351-7.
Away trips to face Worcestershire began in 1921 for Notts and since then they have played a total of 60 fixtures. Seven of those games have been at Kidderminster, four at Dudley and two at Stourbridge.
The remaining 47 have all been at New Road where the head-to-head count reads 13-12 in favour of Worcestershire, with the other 22 matches being drawn.
It’s been a decade since Notts last won a four-day match there – but the 2001 clash featured one of the county’s greatest-ever run chases. Set to score 461 in the fourth innings of the match, the scorecard read: Darren Bicknell 104, John Morris 94, Greg Blewett 134 not out, Usman Afzaal 88, Paul Johnson 26 not out, as the top five saw the job through for a famous seven wicket success. The winning total is also Nottinghamshire’s highest team total on the ground.
Joe Hardstaff junior, with 202 in 1947, is the only Notts batsman to score a double century at Worcester, with Don Kenyon, Graeme Hick and Tom Moody equalling the feat for the home side in this series of fixtures.
The record books tell us that Harold Larwood always enjoyed his trips to face Worcester. In ten matches at New Road he took 59 wickets at an average of 9, with 9 five-wicket hauls, and twice he took 10 wickets in a match. His 8-49 in 1932 is the best for the county there.
Home and away, Larwood took a total of 110 wickets against Worcestershire at just 10 runs apiece – a truly phenomenal success rate.
Only two Notts players have scored three centuries at New Roa;, Derek Randall and Tim Robinson. Rags’ 107 in 1973 was his maiden first class century.
Over the past 30 years other Notts centurions there have been Richard Hadlee, Chris Broad, Paul Johnson and Kevin Pietersen.
John Birch, in 1973, was the last Nottinghamshire player to make his first class debut at Worcester and recent players to have represented both sides include Bobby Chapman, Paul Pollard, Chris Tolley and Nadeem Malik.
There are just a couple of milestones to perhaps keep an eye out for this week with Paul Franks now on 489 first class wickets and Chris Read on 649 first class dismissals for Notts (617 catches 32 stumpings).
A Nottinghamshire hat-trick is also long overdue. There hasn’t been one for the county since Charlie Shreck did it against Middlesex at Lord’s in 2006 (Ed Smith, Eoin Morgan and Paul Weekes) and none have ever been recorded at New Road, although Kevin Saxelby did grab three wickets in four balls in 1986.