Chanderpaul century leads Lancashire Roses fight back
Shivnarine Chanderpaul scored his 75th first-class century to lead a Lancashire fight back on the third day of this Specsavers County Championship match and close in on Yorkshire’s imposing first innings total of 448-8 declared for whom Jack Brooks completed a maiden first-class century at the start of the day.
By the close, Lancashire had reached 264-6 to be 184 runs in arrears and need 35 runs to avoid the follow-on going in to tomorrow’s final day of this Roses Match.
Chanderpaul’s near five-hour stay at the crease helped turn the Lancashire innings around from a perilous 39-3 and ease Red Rose fears of following-on with a typically unflustered innings that spanned the afternoon and all but four overs of the evening session, and the 42 year-old was aided by vital contributions from Ryan McLaren and Dane Vilas.
“It was hard work out there,” said Shivnarine Chanderpaul reflecting on his lengthy stay at the crease.
“We lost some early wickets and someone had to dig in and lay the foundation. Ryan batted really well, as did Dane Vilas.”
Looking ahead to the final day, Chanderpaul added: “Hopefully tomorrow Ryan can push on and get us passed the 300 mark and put some more bonus points on the board for us.
Lancashire’s reply to Yorkshire’s large total had soon hit trouble this morning.
Alex Davies was quickly into his stride, on-driving Brooks for four but the bowler struck early, knocking back Haseeb Hameed’s off stump with a superb delivery before the batsman had scored.
Liam Livingstone then edged an in-swinging delivery from Ryan Sidebottom to Adam Lyth at second slip to depart for 4.
Steven Croft edged Tim Bresnan to Peter Handscomb at first slip for 13 to leave Lancashire struggling on 39-3, but Davies and Chanderpaul steadied matters in reaching lunch on 67-3.
Davies had played some good attacking shots to be on 39 at the break but the Red Rose opener was out in unfortunate circumstances when nicking an attempted leave to wicketkeeper Andy Hodd off Sidebottom without adding to his score soon after play resumed.
Vilas then gave good support to Chanderpaul to help add 67 inside 15 overs as Lancashire started to rebuild, but the South African got the faintest of nicks to wicketkeeper Hodd when pushing forward to Azeem Rafiq to depart for 29 with the score 135-5.
Unperturbed, Chanderpaul continued to compile another impressive innings, the left hander timing some lovely drives to find the boundary three times in one Brooks over on his way to a 85-ball half century as Lancashire reached tea on 173-5.
Chanderpaul moved on serenely throughout the final part of the day, frustrating the White Rose attack in the process and gradually edging his way towards three figures and Lancashire towards safety.
The left-hander pulled off-spinner Jack Leaning for a six over mid-wicket to move into the nineties before reaching his century from 184 balls with ten fours to add to that six.
McLaren had provided solid support at the other end, bringing up his own half-century and the century partnership for the sixth wicket moments earlier with square drive off Ben Coad for his ninth four as the Yorkshire attack found the conditions just as difficult as their Red Rose counterparts had experienced twenty four hours earlier.
Chanderpaul’s innings ended on 106 just four overs before the close, bowled by Ben Coad, which Lancashire reached on 264-6, and 184 runs behind.
“I couldn't believe that I missed that ball and got out,” said Chanderpaul.
“I was really looking forward to batting on tomorrow. I was looking at the scoreboard to see how many overs were left and trying to see out the evening.
“But that's the way cricket goes.”
The former West Indies Test star is pleased how his season with Lancashire has started, saying: “The passion and the hunger is still there, and you just want to perform and keep going.
“You come here and you want to perform and show that you still have it. I am happy I am able to do that.
Chanderpaul smiled when it was pointed out this was his 75th century, but his thoughts were mainly focused on what lies ahead.
“I wasn't too sure how many centuries I had,” he admitted. “I was asked out there by the umpire how many centuries I had, but I wasn't sure.
“Whenever you get an opportunity you have to make it count, especially for the team.
“We have to bat as long as we can tomorrow. If we get past 300 we are in a good position to not have to bat again in this match.”
Earlier, Yorkshire batted on for eight overs at the start of the day, Leaning departing for 118 from the fifth ball after pulling Tom Bailey to McLaren on the square leg boundary.
Brooks, 94 not out overnight, carefully stroked his way to a maiden first-class century that had taken 146 balls, then smashed the fifth six of his innings which ended on 110 not out when White Rose skipper Gary Ballance called a halt with Yorkshire on 448-8.
Photo: Simon Pendrigh