Lingering hopes of a positive outcome to Derbyshire’s match against Glamorgan at Derby were not so much put on ice as frozen out by a spectacular storm midway through the final afternoon.
A violent hailstorm broke over the ground shortly after 2.25pm and turned the outfield white, leaving conditions too wet for the match to resume.
By that stage, there was little chance of anything other than a draw with Glamorgan 87-2 in their second innings, a lead of 119, with Jacques Rudolph and Chris Cooke making sure there was no late panic in the visiting dressing room.
Even before the start of the fourth day, both teams were struggling to get into a position where they could have exerted enough pressure to force victory with Derbyshire 46 behind with one wicket intact.
Tom Poynton and Andy Carter extended their partnership to 56 in nine overs and Derbyshire were only five away from a fourth batting point when Carter got a steepling leading edge off Michael Hogan.
Carter’s career-best 39 had helped reduce the deficit to 32 so Derbyshire still entertained slim hopes if they could strike early.
The lead had increased by 26 when James Kettleborough made his second misjudgment of the match with the same result, off-stump knocked back offering no shot, and Will Bragg followed his first day century with another lbw dismissal to Wes Durston’s off-spin.
At lunch, Glamorgan were 79 on and Rudolph and Cooke quietly eased the game towards the draw that was confirmed when hailstones the size of marbles descended on the ground.
In all, 138 overs were lost to weather of varying shades of winter and spoiled what Derbyshire’s elite performance director Graeme Welch believes could have been a very good game.
“It’s not very often you see snow nearly at the start of May and Jacques Rudolph said it was the coldest he’s ever played in.
“I think they probably got 50 or 60 runs too many in the first innings but we did well to get what we did with Andy Carter smacking it around and I think, if the weather hadn’t intervened, it would have been a very good game on a very good cricket pitch.”
For Hogan, who finished with four wickets, it was a case of what might have been. “It’s a shame because the weather ruined a good game of cricket,” he said.
“If we had a full four days of play, it would have been a really nice game. Given our performance last week, we had some things to take care of and prove that was just a mishap and they probably thought they might be able to knock us over.
“So we took it as a way to exorcise some demons.”