Patterson gives Yorkshire the edge against Durham
Career-best bowling by Steve Patterson allowed Yorkshire to dominate the opening day of their Specsavers County Championship match against Durham at Chester-le-Street.
Shouldering the burden of carrying a depleted attack, he took six for 56 to dismiss Durham for 172, Yorkshire replying with 129 for four.
Scott Borthwick, tipped for a place in the England squad to face Pakistan, ran himself out for two, leaving Alex Lees to seize the chance to impress national selector James Whitaker.
Driving powerfully through the off side, Lees hit seven fours in a 56-ball half-century on his way to 71. He lost his off stump three overs from the close to Chris Rushworth, who also bowled Patterson two balls later to end the day with four for 42.
Although Patterson’s last two wickets were gifts, he was rewarded for his relentless accuracy in a 14-over spell broken by lunch, during which he recovered from conceding 18 in his first three overs to take four for 44.
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Without him Yorkshire would have struggled to justify the decision to dispense with the toss on a day which brightened considerably after an early half hour interruption.
Tim Bresnan shared the new ball with Ben Coad, making his first-class debut, and Durham reached 49 before Keaton Jennings shouldered arms and lost his off stump to Josh Shaw’s seventh ball.
Borthwick pushed Patterson to Andrew Gale’s right at mid-off and hesitated before trying to scamper a risky single. After veering past the bowler, his dive for the crease failed to beat Gale’s direct hit.
Patterson moved one into left-hander Mark Stoneman to have him lbw without addition to his luncthime 45 just before Jack Burnham, on four, was dropped at first slip by Lees off Shaw.
Burnham went on to make 49 before he was last out, skying a slog to cover off Patterson, whose best balls accounted for Michael Richardson and Ryan Pringle.
Paul Collingwood looked anxious to get after Patterson, but after driving one four through the covers he went for a wider one and sliced it to backward point.
With the pitch offering just enough to bowlers of their pace, Rushworth matched Patterson’s skill and accuracy in taking two for 31 in a nine-over opening spell.
Adam Lyth edged a drive at an away swinger and Kane Williamson fell for 10 when Jennings moved to his left to hold a very sharp catch at gully.
Like Patterson, Rushworth lacked support with the home attack also depleted and Graham Onions returning from a three-week lay-off. Gary Ballance settled in comfortably before hitting Usman Arshad for three successive fours on his way to 35 at the close, but Rushworth’s two late wickets kept Durham afloat.