Talk about hitting the ground running! Yorkshire started their Bob Willis Trophy campaign in impressive fashion today, bowling Durham out for just 103 at Emirates Riverside and then almost getting level before close.
After a little over 10 months without competitive action, the White Rose made up for lost time on day one of the season proper as Ben Coad starred with 4-23 from 16.4 overs and all-rounder Jordan Thompson 3-16 from 13.
The gloss was somewhat taken off the day as Durham struck three times in 11 balls on the way to Yorkshire closing 84-4 from 22 overs. But the White Rose are still in an extremely strong position.
Durham captain Ned Eckersley elected to bat upon winning the toss, though it proved to be a good one to lose for his opposite number Steve Patterson, who later struck once and impressed alongside Matthew Fisher (2-43).
Yorkshire’s four-man seam attack made the most of the help on offer, both through the air and off the pitch, and claimed six wickets during a superb afternoon after a rain-interrupted morning (seven overs were lost).
Only 8.3 overs were possible before lunch, where Durham reached at 12-0. In the afternoon, they fell from 13-0 to 68-6.
Yorkshire’s bowlers, minus Duanne Olivier due to a lack of preparation following quarantine and injured Matthew Waite, were relentless.
New ball duo Fisher and Coad, for example, conceded only eight runs from eight overs and 17 from 10 in their opening spells, and both picked up a wicket.
Durham were unable to break the shackles. And when they tried, David Bedingham flicked a loose leg-side ball from Thompson down to deep backward square-leg, where Fisher took a low catch (41-4 in the 29th over).
Rain arrived at 11.30am before an early lunch at 12.30pm. Play resumed under sunny skies 40 minutes later, though floodlights were used later on.
Fisher, bowling from the Lumley End of this ground, struck first when he had former team-mate Alex Lees lbw with a full, in-swinging delivery, leaving the score at 13-1 after 12 overs.
Coad, bowling from the Finchale End – the same end Thompson had his success – then had Sean Dickson caught behind – 25-2 in the 17th.
Thompson, in only his third first-class appearance, really put the skids under the Durham innings with twin strikes in a miserly six-over opening burst which only cost him seven runs.
He had Cameron Steel caught behind for nine and Bedingham caught by Fisher, the latter a soft dismissal but one which pressure brought – 41-4.
Coad returned to the attack and removed Jack Burnham’s off-stump (61-5 in the 39th) before Patterson trapped Durham’s skipper Eckersley lbw seven runs and almost three overs later.
The hosts reached tea at 74-6, but there was no let-up afterwards.
Thompson, who debuted in first-class cricket against Surrey at Guildford last year, trapped Paul Coughlin lbw four balls into the evening, the score slipping to 77-7 in the 45th over.
Fisher then claimed his second scalp as Ben Raine was pinned in front shouldering arms (86-8 in the 50th).
Gareth Harte top-scored with an unbeaten 33 and at least steered his side beyond 100. But Coad wrapped up the innings with two wickets in four balls in the 58th. He had Matty Potts caught at square-leg by Fisher and Chris Rushworth caught and bowled.
The start of Yorkshire’s reply was then a complete contrast.
They may have lost Adam Lyth cheaply, caught at first slip off Rushworth, but Tom Kohler-Cadmore raced out of the blocks and helped to bring up his county’s 50 in 10 overs.
In fact, Yorkshire matched Durham’s total of nine boundaries in their innings in only 11.2 overs.
Unfortunately, Kohler-Cadmore fell as one of three quick wickets to give Durham a lift.
Kohler-Cadmore was bowled by Raine for 41 off as many balls – 66-2 in the 16th – before Coughlin trapped Will Fraine and nightwatchman Patterson lbw as the score fell to 68-4 in the next over.
Dawid Malan then survived a huge lbw appeal from Raine on two before closing on 14 with Harry Brook for company.
Meanwhile, before play, both teams observed a minute’s silence in respect of those affected by Covid-19 and then took a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.