Lancashire’s Bob Willis Trophy match at Nottinghamshire ended in a draw after the Red Rose batted out the final two sessions without losing a wicket
They ended the match 120 without loss in their second innings, with Keaton Jennings on 37 not out and Alex Davies unbeaten on 69, though still trailing their hosts’ first innings total of 472 by 179 runs after being forced to follow on.
Nottinghamshire took 16 points from the game to Lancashire nine and both sides will almost certainly now need to win their last two games to stand any chance of qualifying for the final at Lord’s on September 23.
The untroubled ease with which Lancashire’s batsmen secured the draw on a blameless pitch made something of a contrast to their first innings, which ended 90 minutes into the final day with Dane Vilas’ side 299 runs behind after being bowled out for 173.
In the morning it had taken Nottinghamshire nearly an hour to take their first wicket of the day when Steven Croft, having reached his 50 off 103 balls, could only fend Tom Barber’s excellent bouncer to substitute fielder Liam Patterson-White in the gully.
Croft’s departure for 59 brought Luke Wood to the wicket, along with Lancashire skipper Vilas, who was running for Wood to prevent him further damaging his injured hamstring.
However, Vilas was only in the middle for 25 minutes before Wood skied a low full toss from Barber to Ben Slater at short leg and departed for six.
Tom Bailey hit his first ball for four but was caught at second slip by Ben Duckett when slashing at his second.
In the next over, Liam Hurt was caught by Tom Moores off Peter Trego for a single and Lancashire had lost their last three wickets for five runs in eight balls.
Tom Hartley, who is playing in his second first-class match, was left unbeaten on 13. The 22-year-old had batted longer and faced more balls than anyone else in the innings except Croft.
Trego finished with three for 33, Barber three for 42 and Zak Chappell three for 48.
Nottinghamshire took eight bonus points from the game to Lancashire’s one and dominated this match for most of the first seven sessions.
Nevertheless, Steven Mullaney’s team are still searching for their first four-day win since June 2018.
It’s one win, one draw and one defeat so far for third-placed Lancashire going into Saturday’s Roses encounter at Emerald Headingley.
Jennings said: “It was good to come out of a game in which we’ve not played well with a draw.
“It gives guys confidence that we will fight back from games in which we are not in a great position.
“Hopefully we can start better with bat and ball because we feel we were below par in both regards this week.We pride ourselves on being a side that is tough to beat.
“We didn’t play our best cricket for the first three days, so we had to stand up today and face the music.
“Thankfully it was one of those days in which myself and Alex were able to pull the side through to a really positive draw.”