County Championship: Liam Norwell takes 5-32 to put Warwickshire in command against Derbyshire

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Liam Norwell has now had 12 'five-fers' in his career but this was his first for Warwickshire since his debut against Somerset at Taunton in 2019
Liam Norwell has now had 12 ‘five-fers’ in his career but this was his first for Warwickshire since his debut against Somerset at Taunton in 2019
County Championship Group One, Edgbaston (day one):
Derbyshire 189: Critchley 64, Reece 63; Norwell 5-32
Warwickshire 13-1
Warwickshire 3 pts, Derbyshire 0 pts
Scorecard

Warwickshire fast bowler Liam Norwell (5-32) claimed the main honours at Edgbaston as the Bears bowled out Derbyshire for 189 on the opening day of the new County Championship season.

Norwell has been limited by injuries to just six red-ball games in three years.

But, backed by Oliver Hannon-Dalby, his opening burst reduced Derbyshire to 7-3 and they struggled to recover.

Matt Critchley and Luis Reece made half-centuries before the visitors rallied with the scalp of Will Rhodes.

Starting his first Championship game as Bears captain, Rhodes was trapped leg before wicket for a second-ball duck by Sam Conners as the hosts closed eightovers early on 13-1. But it was Norwell’s day as the former Gloucestershire man made a great start to the new campaign.

After suffering injuries either side of his move from Bristol to Birmingham, Norwell has had a frustrating time, making just one Championship appearance for Gloucestershire in 2018, four for the Bears in 2019, then just one in the Bob Willis Trophy last September.

But, after Derbyshire had been put in, Norwell struck with his second and fifth balls of his first over, finding Billy Godleman’s edge before uprooting Anuj Dal’s off-stump.

Critchley (64) and Reece (63) then added 93 in 22 overs in the afternoon session before Norwell returned to have both caught in the slips, one for Sam Hain, one for a diving Tim Bresnan – and his fifth wicket was another pouch for Hain to get rid of Harvey Hosein.

The final Derbyshire wicket went to spinner Danny Briggs on his Bears debut when Conners flicked him off the middle to the alert Hain at short leg.

Conners then unleashed a beauty to trap Rhodes but, in an awkward session with the Edgbaston lights on, England opener Dom Sibley made three from nine deliveries, accompanied by the busier Rob Yates, who amassed 10 off 26 balls to help see out a genderally overcast day.

Warwickshire first-team coach Mark Robinson

“You always want to start the season well. We did that right from the first over with a really good first over from Olly Hannon-Dalby, then Liam Norwell backing that up with two wickets in the second.

“Liam was outstanding all day. As soon as I came to the club, I could see the quality he has. We all know the injuries he has had, but he bowls a heavy ball and bowled really well.

“He was well supported by the other bowlers and also the guys in the slips who caught brilliantly. We have worked hard on our catching. It is always good to see the hard work pay off.”

Derbyshire batsman Luis Reece:

“It was favourable for the bowlers this morning and they bowed exceptionally well in challenging conditions.

“It was hard graft out there but we made a bit of a fightback in that second session. And, from a personal point of view, it was pleasing to get some runs.

“You never know how you are going to shape up in a new season, but I was able to spend a bit of time out there in the middle.”

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