Essex's England pair slump as Derbyshire take control
|LV County Championship Division Two, Derby|
|Close of play, day one: Essex 179 v Derbyshire 64-2|
England's Alastair Cook and Ravi Bopara both failed as Essex were shot out by Derbyshire on day one at Derby.
After Cook (4) and Bopara (0) fell, it was left to James Foster (62) and Matt Walker (56) to help Essex to 179 all out, but no other batsman passed 20.
Tony Palladino and Azeem Rafiq both picked up three wickets for the hosts.
David Masters then had both Chesney Hughes and Usman Khawaja caught behind to leave Derbyshire 64-2 at the close, with Wayne Madsen unbeaten on 25.
After being asked bat on losing the toss, the visitors were reeling at 43-5, with former Essex seamer Palladino doing most of the damage.
He had newly-appointed England one-day captain Cook caught behind, trapped Jaik Mickleburgh lbw and enticed Adam Wheater to sky a pull shot, while at the other end Bopara edged Tim Groenewald to wicketkeeper Luke Sutton and Mark Pettini was bowled off his thigh pad by Greg Smith.
Foster and Walker led the fight back with a stand of 109, but when Walker top-edged spinner Rafiq to Sutton, Essex lost their last five wickets for 27 runs.
Masters found some lift to account for Hughes and Khawaja, but the day belonged to Derbyshire.
CLOSE OF PLAY SUMMARY
BBC Essex's Dick Davies:
"An excellent toss to win saw the hosts take full advantage of a helpful wicket.
"At 43-5 soon after midday, Essex looked to be in deep trouble but the ever-dependable Matthew Walker and the equally resourceful skipper, James Foster, added 109 for the sixth wicket.
"Between them, these two made 118 of Essex's 179 with Mark Pettini the only other man to reach double figures.
"Former Essex player Tony Palladino revelled in taking three of the first five wickets, with that of Alastair Cook undoubtedly giving him extra satisfaction.
"By removing both Hughes and Khawaja, Essex kept themselves in the game as Derbyshire closed on 64-2 at the end of an interesting, rather than spectacular, day."