Jennings joins Durham elite with second century against Somerset

Keaton Jennings today
Keaton Jennings today
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Keaton Jennings made hay while the afternoon sun shone for Durham, then earned a place in the record books with the Riverside floodlights shining for the first time in the County Championship.

The lights were on for the last 11 overs, during which the left-handed opener lofted Somerset’s Roelof van der Merwe wide of mid-on to become only the third Durham player to score two hundreds in a match.

To join such an elite crew of him and Dean Jones is a privilege and I hope I can follow in their footsteps.

Australian Dean Jones achieved the feat against Pakistan in Durham’s inaugural first-class season, 1992, and Paul Collingwood did the double against Somerset at Taunton in 2005.

After making 116 in the first innings of the Specsavers Division One clash, Jennings was 105 not out at the close with Collingwood on 39. The score was 223 for four, a lead of 300.

Jennings, who is the son of former South Africa coach Ray Jennings, said: “I spoke to my dad on Facetime this morning and will do it again tomorrow. To see the joy on his face makes me very proud.

“Paul Collingwood took the attack to them towards the end and took the pressure off me. When I reached my hundred he said: ‘Well done, not a lot of people have done this’.

“To join such an elite crew of him and Dean Jones is a privilege and I hope I can follow in their footsteps.”

Jennings reached 50 off 63 balls, compared with 130 in the first innings, but was obliged to revert to grafting mode when the cloud cover returned after tea.

In the morning superb bowling by Graham Onions, assisted by the run-out of visiting skipper Chris Rogers, saw Durham reduce Somerset from their overnight 30-3 to 102-8.

Peter Trego and Gregory then counter-attacked in a stand of 66 before the visitors were all out for 179, Onions finishing with four for 64.

Rogers survived a searching examination by Onions, only to find himself stranded by Stoneman’s direct hit from mid-off when Trego risked a run off the first ball he faced.

There were two wickets for championship debutant Brydon Carse, who looked the quickest bowler in the match.

Wicketkeeper Ryan Davies tried to fend a short ball to leg and lobbed it back to the bowler and Trego was last out for the top score of 45 when he slogged the first ball of Carse’s second spell to mid-on.

Having conceded a first-innings deficit of 79, Somerset contributed heavily to their own troubles with some dreadful bowling in the first 10 overs.

The first three yielded 32 runs, Lewis Gregory conceding 24 in two, and with 66 on the board, Mark Stoneman pulled Tim Groenewald for six off the first ball of the 11th over.

But only two more runs were added before he surrendered for 41 in van der Merwe’s first over of left-arm spin, driving straight to short mid-wicket.

The rate slowed as Scott Borthwick played himself in and Durham were 109 for one from 25 overs at tea.

The next 20 overs brought only 46 runs for the loss of three wickets before Collingwood emerged in fading light and swiftly atoned for his first-ball dismissal in the first innings with two imperious drives off Gregory.

He added three more fours and a six as he and Jennings put on an unbroken 72 inside 16 overs by the close.