Worcestershire completed a comprehensive victory over title challengers Lancashire within two days after Alan Richardson produced a fine bowling display to compliment James Cameron's batting performance in the first innings.
Worcestershire started the day 48 runs ahead with four wickets remaining in their first innings. It took less than an hours play for the visitors to pick up the wickets with Glenn Chapple and Kyle Hogg taking two wickets apiece. Ben Scott and James Cameron extended the overnight 7th wicket stand to 97 runs before Scott edged a Hogg delivery to the keeper Gareth Cross for 47.
James Cameron fell just short of a well deserved century after a well fought innings lasting 207 deliveries containing 13 boundaries. Glenn Chapple picked up the wicket bowling Cameron for 98 with a delivery that kept low. Worcestershire were eventually dismissed for 237 giving them a more than useful 1st innings lead of 76 runs.
With Stephen Moore absent, Lancashire were down to ten men at the start of their innings with Mark Chilton coming in to open the innings with Paul Horton. The visitors reached 20-0 by the end of the 7th over before Richardson struck for the first time trapping Chilton playing forward LBW for 3. Richardson went on to take 3-8 in his seven over spell before the lunch break with the visitors already in trouble on 37-3.
After lunch Tom Smith and Steven Croft batted for eight overs for just 8 runs as Richardson continued his spell at the New Road end. Tom Smith was eventually trapped LBW by Richardson for 10 after facing 44 deliveries with Gareth Cross following the same way two balls later.
With Lancashire in deep trouble Worcestershire went in for the kill with Kemar Roach sending down some fierce deliveries clean bowling both Chapple (12) and Mahmood (0) with successive deliveries. Richardson picked up his sixth wicket to another LBW decision, this time Steven Croft for 10 to finish with remarkable figures of 6-22 in 15 overs. Kyle Hogg was determined to go out in style with 18 off 15 deliveries which at least meant Worcestershire had to bat again but was beaten for pace by Roach and was bowled as he stepped away from the wicket. Roach finished on 3-44 as the visitors were dismissed for 80 within 31 overs.
It was a fine bowling display by Roach and Richardson on a pitch that certainly favoured the bowlers, but over the course of the match there was only a few deliveries that kept low and some of the wickets fell due to batting technique by both sides rather than anything to do with the pitch. Richardson in particular bowled full and straight and was rewarded with his 6 wicket haul taking his season's tally to 62 wickets.
This left the home side with a target of just 5 runs required to record their fourth win of the campaign which they achieved in 3 balls to complete a 10 wicket victory. The win does not guarantee 1st division status next season but has made it a very real possibility. It does set up a very interesting contest next week at New Road against Sussex who may well be only 3 points ahead of Worcestershire by the start of the match.
Worcestershire (237 & 5-0) beat Lancashire (161 & 80) by 10 wickets.
Worcestershire 20 points. Lancashire 3 points.