Nottinghamshire declared at the fall of their eighth wicket in order to end the match and deny Yorkshire the chance of a third bowling bonus point in the rain-ruined Championship clash at Trent Bridge on Saturday.

Had Nottinghamshire continued at 353-8, Yorkshire would have had 5.2 overs in which to take a further wicket and pick up an extra point but they could hardly claim they were unfairly treated because their opponents were far superior with both bat and ball.

Nottinghamshire took 11 points out of the match to Yorkshire's eight, yet the gulf between the sides was far wider than that.

Although the dismal spring weather has left Yorkshire short of match practice their pace bowling still looked paper thin in this match and a big improvement is needed if they are to challenge for honours later in the season.

New signing John Blain did not look a front line bowler with figures of 0-87 from 14 overs while Chris Silverwood has yet to find his touch and young Tim Bresnan also seemed far from the finished article.

Craig White gave himself just five overs when it was much too late to matter and with Australian all-rounder Ian Harvey still not fully recovered from his knee strain he bowled a mere three overs only when close of play was looming.

Spinner Richard Dawson was given a good workout and he was the pick of the crop with 3-102 from 30.4 overs but the attack as a whole caused Notts few anxious moments.

Skipper Jason Gallian opened his side's innings as they replied to Yorkshire's 264 and he was soon in full sail as he cruised to 133 from 161 balls with 25 fours and a six which meant that all but 27 of his runs came in boundaries.

Neither Silverwood nor Blain could find the right line with the new ball as Gallian and Darren Bicknell took part in a fruitful first wicket stand of 110, Gallian surviving a slip catch to Harvey off Dawson before he lost his partner to a catch at the second attempt by Simon Guy to bring Silverwood his only wicket.

When wickets did fall, it was mainly through batsmen getting themselves out to some wild strokes and Yorkshire are going to have to improve their bowling a lot by the time they resume Championship cricket next week when Matthew Hoggard will be available for the game against Hampshire at Headingley and Steve Kirby may have recovered from his back injury.

The brightest part of the day for Yorkshire came right at the start when Dawson and Blain resumed their entertaining last wicket stand, Blain showing he is no mug with the bat by pulling Greg Smith clean out of the ground for six.

The adventurous pair had added 71 together in 15 overs and a maiden century was beginning to look possible for Dawson when he was caught at first slip by Gallian for a polished 81 from 107 balls with ten fours and a six.

Yorkshire finished up with only two of the five batting bonus points available and they would not have managed those if Dawson and the tail had not hauled them on to their feet from an undignified 151-8.

Updated: 11:30 Monday, May 03, 2004