Durham bowlers snatch edge on close day at Bristol

Durham bowlers snatch edge on close day at Bristol

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Stumps, Day One: Gloucestershire 265/7 (Tavaré 61, Dent 59) against Durham.

Durham finished the first day at the Brightside Ground, Bristol with their noses in front, reducing Gloucestershire to 265/7 after a day reduced to 77 overs due to bad light ending play at 5:15. 

On a pitch which seemed as if 340 may be a par score Gloucestershire will feel that one of their batters who got out when set for a big score should have pushed on, but it wasn’t to be and they will end the day feeling that they may not have got enough runs.

The Gloucestershire wickets were shared between four of the six Durham bowlers used – Chris Rushworth, Paul Collingwood and Keaton Jennings taking two each and Brydon Carse chipping in with his first Specsavers County Championship wicket of the season.

England fans looking for a successful international summer from Mark Wood will peruse the scorecard with dismay but they should fear not. Arguably, Wood was the pick of the Durham bowlers. He bowled with pace, accuracy and no little hostility- but precious little luck. He passed the bat too often for his patience and disappeared from the attack later in the day with unflattering, and unfair, figures of 0/51 from 15 overs.

He bowled with pace, accuracy and no little hostility – but precious little luck. He passed the bat too often for his patience and disappeared from the attack later in the day with unflattering, and unfair, figures of 0/51 from 15 overs.

On a cloudy morning, Gloucestershire batted first after an uncontested toss. Cameron Bancroft was first to go, playing on to Rushworth for five. The young Western Australian is still coming to terms with batting in English spring conditions, the test of facing Rushworth and Graham Onions adding to his difficulties.

The young Western Australian is still coming to terms with batting in English spring conditions, the test of facing Rushworth and Graham Onions adding to his difficulties.

Well though the Durham opening pair performed it was the introduction of Mark Wood that generated most interest amongst the watching Bristol faithful. Starting rather gingerly he soon built up some genuine pace, recalling the superbly hostile spell he bowled here in the NatWest Blast T20 quarter- final last season. Chris Dent and Will Tavaré looked tentative but saw off spells from the Durham trio.

Starting rather gingerly he soon built up some genuine pace, recalling the superbly hostile spell he bowled here in the NatWest Blast T20 quarter- final last season. Chris Dent and Will Tavaré looked tentative but saw off spells from the Durham trio.

The introduction of skipper Paul Collingwood heralded Dent’s half-century, the innings of the day, scored from 75 balls with 9 fours, reaching the milestone with a superb cover-driven four.

There was a repeat performance in the next over but the Durham veteran soon had him in trouble, edging through slips before he was dropped at cover point, an easy chance to Stephen Cook.

But Collingwood, who bowled excellently, was soon to have his revenge. In the last over before lunch, he had Dent caught behind for 59 and Graeme van Buuren lbw without scoring. From a prosperous 97/1 suddenly Gloucestershire found themselves lunching at 97/3.

George Hankins, after a century in the seconds this week, settled in after lunch without looking totally at ease. He’d reached 27 when he became seamer Brydon Carse’s first Championship victim of the season, edging high to Collingwood at second slip.

Meanwhile, Tavaré soldiered on – 20* at lunch, he reached his second successive Championship fifty from 121 balls. After a miserable couple of seasons following his first successful summer of 2014 he is promising to fill the shoes of the departed Michael Klinger and Hamish Marshall in the red-ball side.

But any thoughts of another Tavaré century vanished with Gloucestershire on 187 as he was caught down the leg side by wicketkeeper Stuart Poynter for 61. At tea, Gloucestershire were 198/5 with skipper Phil Mustard unbeaten on 22.

After the break, Mustard and Jack Taylor pushed the score along until Keaton Jennings’ medium pace accounted for Mustard, caught at second slip by Collingwood for 38. Craig Miles went in identical fashion with the first ball of Jennings’ next over, Collingwood’s third catch meaning he had been involved in five of the seven dismissals.

When the light closed in Jack Taylor was 41 not out and David Payne 9*. The pair shared a 50 partnership here last weekend against Leicestershire and a similar effort in this match would be invaluable if their side is to achieve parity in the first innings of this match.

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