YORKSHIRE are in control of the Roses match after a healthy opening day with ball and bat against Lancashire at Emirates Old Trafford yesterday.
Jack Brooks, Ryan Sidebottom and Adil Rashid all claimed three wickets as the Red Rose, reduced to 0-2 inside three balls of the match, posted a below-par 278 after electing to bat first.
Alex Lees and Adam Lyth then steadily progressed the White Rose reply to 61-0 from 19 overs before close, with Lees unbeaten on 36 and Lyth 25 not out.
Sidebottom sparked a frantic start to this eagerly anticipated fixture, which sees Yorkshire going for the Championship title and Lancashire bidding to avoid relegation for the second time in three years.
He had Paul Horton trapped lbw with a big inswinger two balls in and Usman Khawaja caught behind for a golden duck.
Lancashire rallied thanks to half-centuries for Luis Reece, Ashwell Prince and Tom Smith, although they look to be in the region of 50 runs shy of a par total on a pitch which is expected to spin later on. There is also a short boundary towards the Stretford side of the ground.
As Reece and Prince underpinned the recovery with a counter-attacking stand of 96 inside 23 overs for the third wicket, Brooks conceded 51 in his first eight overs, while Steve Patterson was also unusually expensive.
Brooks, however, recovered well to finish with 3-64 from 16 overs.
“You could see Lancs came out with a positive attitude to try to put us under pressure, and we probably didn’t get our lines and lengths right as a bowling unit, apart from Siddy, who was top drawer,” said Brooks.
“I wasn’t happy with myself for the way I bowled, it was far too erratic. But I knew that I had a spell in me where I could drag it back and have a three or four-wicket haul. Thankfully, I did.
“Lythy and Leesy played really nicely there and saw it through. Hopefully day two will be a good batting day.
“It was just one of those days where I couldn’t feel any rhythm. I was scratching my head and asking other people. Thankfully I stuck at it and got my rewards.”
Lancashire lost wickets to a number of loose shots. Prince was bowled reverse sweeping at Rashid’s leg-spin just before lunch, and after Sidebottom trapped Reece lbw two balls into the afternoon, others fell softly.
Alex Davies drove Rich Pyrah loosely to cover, where Jack Leaning took an excellent diving catch, while Tom Smith was caught behind driving expansively outside off against Brooks to fall in similar fashion to Khawaja.
Simon Kerrigan was the victim of a stunning catch by Lees running back from mid-on to help Rashid wrap up the innings.
Tim Bresnan, meanwhile, is missing this match due to a pectoral strain picked up during the last week. He is expected to be fit for Sunday’s T20 international between England and India at Edgbaston having been selected in that squad.
“He tried it out before play, but we decided not to risk him.
“He probably won’t bowl until Thursday or Friday, although the signs are that he should be alright and it will clear up within three or four days,” said Yorkshire’s director of cricket Martyn Moxon.