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Anderson blast boosts Lancs hopes at Sedbergh

Anderson blast boosts Lancs hopes at Sedbergh

Lancashire and Durham produced another fascinating battle on the second day of this Specsavers County Championship match at Sedbergh School.

A three-wicket burst by Lancashire after tea, with James Anderson striking twice in quick succession, halted a good Durham reply after the visitors had earlier bowled the Red Rose out for 337.

Jack Burnham and Liam Trevaskis revived their innings with a half century partnership during the final session with stumps reached on 199-5, a deficit of 138 runs.

Resuming day two on 275-5, three runs by Lancashire captain Dane Vilas from the first ball of the day brought up the 50 partnership off 72 balls for the 6th wicket with Steven Croft.  But Durham were soon celebrating the wickets of both batsmen.

Croft had taken consecutive boundaries off Brydon Carse in the fourth over of the day to move to 42 but the bowler then produced a lifting delivery that the batsmen could only edge to Bancroft at second slip.

Vilas followed six balls later for 72 after chipping a Chris Rushworth delivery that appeared to ‘stop’ a bit in the pitch to Nathan Rimmington at mid-off.

Josh Bohannon cut Rushworth for four to bring up the 300 and a third batting point in the 105th over before losing partners Saqib Mahmood lbw for 2 and Graham Onions caught behind for 0, both to Rimmington, to leave Lancashire 313-9.

Bohannon immediately moved up a gear, launching Rimmington high over mid-on, in adding 24 for the last wicket with Anderson who was last man out for 4, caught at short extra cover to give the persevering Rimmington a fourth wicket with Lancashire 337 all out.

Cameron Bancroft and Alex Lees survived a tricky five overs before lunch and the Durham openers prospered after the break with an excellent partnership of 70, the highest for the first wicket against Lancashire in the County Championship this season.

Then having made 16, Lees skied a catch to Anderson from a leading edge off Mahmood, the bowler producing a fine testing seven over spell of 1-17 during the middle of the afternoon that could easily yielded a better return.

Bancroft reached his half century from 91 balls (8 fours) in a partnership of 66 with Gareth Harte as Durham replied strongly to reach 136-1.

But Lancashire hit back in sensational fashion by taking three wickets in 17 balls without any addition to the score soon after tea.

Onions nipped one back to bowl Harte for 14 at the end of the 39th over and then Anderson made it two in two balls with the big wicket of Bancroft, bowled for 77 by a delivery that seamed back, from the first ball of the following over.

Anderson followed that success with his 950th first-class wicket when trapping Graham Clark lbw for a duck two overs later in a brilliant searching spell of 7-4-7-2.

Lancashire then missed an opportunity to make further inroads by dropping Liam Trevaskis on 11 with Mahmood the unlucky bowler, and Durham rallied with a determined partnership of 61 between Trevaskis (24 not out) and Burnham to leave this unpredictable game in the balance.

And the day finished in positive fashion for Lancashire when Burnham, having grafted hard for 26 off 87 balls, edged Liam Livingstone to Anderson at slip two overs before the close which the visitors reached on 195-5.

This game at Sedbergh is nicely poised.

"It's still hard to figure out if we're in a good position or not," was James Anderson's assessment at the close.

"We're a bit disappointed we didn't kick on and get a few more runs this morning because at 27 for 5 we thought we could potentially get up to 350 or potentially 400.

"Durham batted really well and got off to a good start and we did well to claw it back in the end because it doesn't feel like the pitch is doing a huge amount. If you get in as a batter you can bat for a long period of time and there's no demons in the pitch just yet.

"I guess we're relatively happy but it depends on how we turn up tomorrow morning because the new ball will be crucial."

"We were thinking about bowling maidens and creating some pressure and luckily Graham (Onions) got a breakthrough and then I followed it next ball which got us on a bit of a roll but unfortunately we couldn't quite kick on and get a few more in that spell."

Anderson-who reached 950 first-class wickets today-smiled when asked if he remembered his first wicket.

"I think I remember my first wicket," he said. "It was Ian Ward caught behind by Warren Hegg but it was a long time ago! I'm happy to have got to where I am at but it is not something I'm that fussed about. It's about focusing on the moment and trying to do a job for the team - if I bowl well the wickets will look after themselves."

And the England fast bowler was full of praise for Sedbergh School, adding:

"It's a beautiful setting and a really nice ground and the wicket has held up really well so that's justified us coming here to be honest."

Ken Grime
Photos: Barry Mitchell

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