Jennings’ career-best innings lifts Durham against Yorkshire

Keaton Jennings in action today
Keaton Jennings in action today
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Keaton Jennings’ career-best 185 not out, his fourth century of the season, transformed Durham’s fortunes on the third day of their Specsavers County Championship match at home to Yorkshire.

On 105 for four when Paul Collingwood joined the left-handed opener, Durham still trailed by 46.

But the captain contributed 61 to a stand of 117, then Usman Arshad capitalised on the fatigue of a depleted attack.

He helped to put on 156 for the seventh wicket, beating by one his previous best of 83, as Durham reached 452 for eight at the close, leading by 301.

Yorkshire had to turn to the occasional off spin of Adam Lyth, Kane Williamson and Jack Leaning, but after Ben Coad brought about an early run-out his maiden first-class wicket came too late for jubilation.

Conditions eased throughout the day, but Jennings did well to survive a tricky first half hour, and it was not until the tenth over that Jennings added to his overnight 46.

He had to shrug off an early setback when Michael Richardson was run out for 13.

A ball from Steve Patterson thudded into his pads and ran off towards square leg. Jennings called him for a single, but he hesitated before responding and was well short when Coad’s throw hit the stumps.

The only other risk Jennings took was after driving Tim Bresnan’s first delivery with the second new ball through extra cover. He just scrambled home for the third run, which took him to his century off 228 balls.

Despite his vigilance, he did not lose sight of any opportunity to cut and drive through the off side.

Collingwood profited from several steers to the third man boundary, although he was fortunate on 19 to survive an upper cut off Josh Shaw, which brushed Andy Hodd’s gloves.

Bresnan and Patterson had a huge burden to bear and Patterson looked forlorn when an impassioned lbw appeal against Collingwood was turned down.

The home captain added only six before the next appeal was upheld, earning a wicket for Williamson, who was once deemed to have a suspect action.

Arshad played some audacious strokes, launching Lyth down the ground for two big sixes and nonchalantly running Bresnan to third man for his seventh four to reach 50 off 66 balls.

He was missed by Alex Lees at slip on 33, delaying Coad’s maiden wicket. It came with the total on 408 when Arshad dabbled outside off stump and edged to Hodd.

Dealing mainly in singles towards the end of a tiring day, Jennings went past his previous best of 177, made against Durham University at the start of last season. There were no more centuries and he was dropped for the last six games.

Durham coach Jon Lewis said: “That was an exceptional innings by Keaton.

“For three years he has been as hard a worker as you would wish to meet.

“He’s a very focused guy who wants to be the best he can be all the time.

“But he has found a better work-life balance so he is more comfortable in himself and doesn’t put himself under as much pressure.”