Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

When Gloves Are off, Michael's a Big Hit; WICKETKEEPER LOSES REGULAR ROLE - AND MAKES HALF-CENTURY

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

When Gloves Are off, Michael's a Big Hit; WICKETKEEPER LOSES REGULAR ROLE - AND MAKES HALF-CENTURY

Article excerpt

Byline: STUART RAYNER Sports writer stuart.rayner@trinitymirror.com @sturayner

MICHAEL Richardson had the wicketkeeping gloves taken off him and responded with only his second County Championship 50 of 2016, but the right-hander would not want you thinking the two were related.

On a tough day, when Warwickshire took advantage of seam and spin, Durham battled to 207 all out.

That they got there was largely due to Richardson's top score of 55.

The 29-year-old's form with the bat has been a concern all season but rather than drop him, Durham decided to select wicketkeeper Stuart Poynter and push Richardson down to six as a specialist batsman.

"It's a conundrum I've been facing," he said afterwards.

"Because of the timing of my slump with the red ball, people may say it's to do with the keeping but I still want to be the keeper.

"But Stuey Poynter's a great keeper so it's not really a loss there. He's very good and confident behind the stumps.

"I probably did need a little bit of a break. Hopefully I can kick on now for the rest of the season."

Richardson thinks the main reason for his improvement was his one-day form.

"I started to do really well in the 50 overs, averaging 52," he pointed out.

"I like to contribute to the team so as soon as I do that, it can snowball from there.

"I think I'm moving a bit better now so hopefully I can translate it into some scores.

"Cricket can be a tough game. Everyone goes through dips in form.

"If you come out the other side that defines you. I've had plenty of times like this over the years. I think that's why I'm still here."

Richardson was certainly not able to play one-day cricket on a pitch Warwickshire took one look at, and told Durham to dig out their bowling boots.

"If you see the number of balls faced by the guys it was a hard-working day," said Richardson. …

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