Some entertaining lower order resistance from all-round pair Kyle Hogg and Wayne White dug Lancashire out of a hole during the opening day of their three-day friendly against Yorkshire at Headingley today.
The Red Rose county were undone by losing six wickets during the afternoon session, slipping from 56-1 to 133-7 against a side including England trio Tim Bresnan, Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow.
But Hogg and White added 136 inside 38 overs a seventh-wicket partnership to turn the tables on the hosts and bring back memories of the former’s starring role the last time Lancashire visited this ground and played with a red ball.
When Peter Moores’s men won the LV= County Championship title in 2011, their thrilling win here was crucial. And Hogg was their star of the show with a fifty and five wickets. He must enjoy his trips over the Pennines!
Lancashire closed the day on 269-7 from 87 overs, with Hogg finishing unbeaten on 69 and White on 62 not out.
Steven Croft and Karl Brown had earlier encouraged during innings of 35 and 32 in a contest which sees both sides naming more than eleven players and rotating them on and off the field throughout.
There was no doubt that Yorkshire had gained the upper hand thanks to dominating an action packed afternoon session, which saw new signings Liam Plunkett and Jack Brooks take two wickets apiece.
But Lancashire will probably be the happier of the two camps with their position in the game at the close of play.
Brown was happy with the match practice so early in the season: “I am happy with how I played. It was very good practice against some quality bowlers. It was certainly very realistic, and I enjoyed it.”
“That’s how we want to play every game this year, we want to be disciplined in everything we do. We want to play in the right way, and we did that today. And Hoggy and White showed that we bat all the way down in this side.”
Bresnan and Root are making their first appearances of the summer for their county after a winter away with England, the former playing his first match since right elbow surgery in America in February.
While the Red Rose opted to rest the likes of Glen Chapple, Ashwell Prince and Simon Katich, Yorkshire picked a full strength team on the back of last week’s LV= County Championship defeat against Sussex here.
Lancashire made a watchful start against some tight bowling from new ball pair Ryan Sidebottom and Steve Patterson, highlighted by Paul Horton only scoring three runs in the first 18 overs.
Sidebottom struck first when he forced Luke Procter to chop on to his stumps in the ninth over, leaving the score at 7-1.
Horton and Brown then shared 49 to take the visitors through until lunch, but their partnership was quickly broken by Brooks when the former was bowled for 25, leaving the score at 56-2 in the 29th over.
Stephen Moore fell cheaply shortly afterwards when he was bowled shouldering arms to the same bowler before Bresnan removed Brown to leave the score at 72-4 in the 37th over. Brown, like Croft later on, looked comfortable at the crease in a similar innings to last week’s 34 against Worcestershire at Emirates Old Trafford.
He had driven successive eye-catching boundaries off Patterson in the 16th over, for example.
Plunkett then trapped Tom Smith lbw in the 47th, Adil Rashid bowled Croft in the 48th and Plunkett had Gareth Cross neatly caught behind by Jonny Bairstow following an inside edge as the Red Rose lost their seventh in the 49th.
Both Hogg and White struck the ball powerfully as they counter-attacked with caution. They hit four sixes between them, with White hitting three of them either straight down the ground or over mid-wicket off the spinners.
Hogg reached his half-century first and then White followed suit just before the close of play.
Photo (c) Simon Pendrigh