Career best for Jennings as Lancs dominate in Leeds
Keaton Jennings completed a superb 238 to record Lancashire’s highest ever individual score in Roses first-class cricket during another dominant day against Yorkshire at Headingley.
The left-handed opener’s third career double century, his second against Yorkshire - the other was for Durham, underpinned his side’s mammoth total of 566 for nine declared on day two of this LV= Insurance County Championship fixture.
Having resumed on an overnight 288 for three from 96 overs, the Red Rose rubbed Yorkshire’s noses in it after they were hurt by a series of dropped catches, including Jennings four times.
Lancashire declared after tea with their highest ever Roses total on the board before Yorkshire reached closed on 53 for two from 22 overs.
Unfortunately for Jennings, he fell just short of the highest individual score for either side in Roses first-class cricket, Darren Lehmann’s 252 here in 2001. But he beat Graham Lloyd’s Lancashire record of 225 in a first-class friendly here four years earlier.
The 29-year-old, who hit 32 fours in 408 balls before being run out, clearly loves batting against Yorkshire.
His previous career best 221 not out came against them for Durham at the Riverside in 2016, added to two other centuries for his current employers last season.
A plethora of centuries have been scored up and down the land at the start of 2022 by county batters young and old. Many will have been spoken about as England possibles for this summer’s Test Matches.
It is likely Jennings, whose last of 17 Tests came in early 2019, will now be the subject of similar speculation following last week’s 110 versus Warwickshire at Emirates Old Trafford, his first innings since last August following calf issues.
He began the day on 150, was particularly strong square of - or behind - the wicket on the off-side with cuts and guides, though also drove handsomely during an innings which spanned nine hours.
Jennings and visiting captain Dane Vilas, who made 82 and with whom he completed a 177 stand for the fourth wicket shortly after lunch, started the day by taking few risks.
Vilas, whose 17th run took him to 10,000 in his first-class career, was the one who upped the tempo before the break.
He pulled Haris Rauf for a huge six over long-leg to reach his fifty and lofted Dom Bess over the ropes much straighter.
The first of them sailed out of the ground over the doubled tiered stand in Headingley’s North East Corner.
Yorkshire at least regained some respectability with four wickets during the afternoon and two after tea.
Off-spinner Bess (three for 151 from 39 overs) led the way and trapped both Vilas and George Balderson lbw and had Phil Salt caught at slip for 37 as Lancashire fell to 504 for seven in the 155th over.
In amongst that, Jennings was sent back by Phil Salt and run out at the non-striker’s end by Jordan Thompson from midwicket.
Tom Loten claimed a superb one-handed return catch to remove Tom Bailey after tea and secure his maiden first-class wicket. He added his second when Luke Wood picked out deep backward square leg for 39, signalling an immediate declaration.
After conceding their third highest first-class score against anyone on this ground, Yorkshire then lost opener Adam Lyth lbw offering no shot to a Bailey in-swinger in the second over of their reply - 11 for one.
Dawid Malan later fell to an excellent diving catch by Matt Parkinson at midwicket off Balderson’s seamers, leaving Yorkshire 48 for two in the 17th.
George Hill and Loten, the nightwatchman, ensured there were no further alarms and reached 15 and three respectively. Jimmy Anderson bowled eight overs across two spells for 27 runs.
(Photos by Luke Adams)