Durham century-maker Scott Borthwick was pleased to conquer the ‘nervous nineties’ as he helped put his side in a strong position on the first day of their Specsavers County Championship match at home to Lancashire.
A superb knock by the Sunderland-born star and an unbeaten 85 from Paul Collingwood carried Durham to 341-6 at Emirates Riverside.
And Borthwick was delighted to finally get a big score this season after a stuttering start to the campaign.
He said: “It’s a decent pitch and I felt in pretty good nick from the start. I didn’t score many in the first two games, but I didn’t feel in bad form.
“A few low scores play on your mind, so it’s good to put them behind me.
“I got out three times in the 90s last year so I was a bit nervous approaching my hundred.
“Once I got there I was determined to go on and I was disappointed with the way I got out.”
Collingwood won the toss but his side were wobbling slightly when he went in at 151-4, three of the wickets going to the deserving Tom Bailey.
But as he approaches his 40th birthday the home captain shared a stand of 123 before Borthwick holed out at long-on off Simon Kerrigan for 134.
Bailey, who induced edged catches from both openers in an impressive eight-over opening spell, picked up his fourth wicket late in the day, when Ryan Pringle gloved an attempted hook to slip, giving Liam Livingstone his third catch.
Durham were without Chris Rushworth for the first time for three years because of a hip injury, sparing them a choice between James Weighell and Barry McCarthy as the replacement for Ben Stokes.
The day belonged to Borthwick, though. He timed the ball superbly from the outset, seizing on any chance to cut and pull.
A glorious cover drive off Wagner for his 14th four took him to his hundred off 158 balls.
Collingwood batted at a very similar tempo, reaching 50 off 80 balls, which included a straight six off Kerrigan.
There was also another promising innings of 44 from England Under 19 batsman Jack Burnham, whose fearless strokes prompted some aggression from Wagner before edging Bailey to slip.