County Championship: Keaton Jennings shining light for Durham

Keaton Jennings
Keaton Jennings hit only his second 50 in 10 innings for Durham
LV= County Championship Division One, Lord's (day two)
Middlesex 463: Robson 178, Simpson 58, Hastings 4-87
Durham 157-4: Jennings 61 not out, Harris 2-46
Durham trail by 306 runs
Middlesex 4 pts, Durham 2 pts
Match scorecard

Keaton Jennings hit an unbeaten half-century but Durham struggled against Middlesex on day two at Lord's.

Wicketkeeper John Simpson pushed the hosts past 400 before John Hastings had him caught by Chris Rushworth at mid-off, with Middlesex bowled out for 463.

Durham's response began poorly as James Harris had Mark Stoneman caught at second slip by Ollie Rayner for 21.

Scott Borthwick, Michael Richardson and Calum MacLeod fell cheaply but Jennings saw the visitors to 157-4 at the close.

Hasting (4-87) took three early wickets but Simpson hit 10 fours in his innings to ensured the home side took maximum batting points.

However. Middlesex bowler Tim Murtagh lasted just two balls of Durham's innings before he was forced off the field with a suspected hamstring injury.

Harris took over and impressed as Durham struggled and he also dismissed Richardson, who nicked behind to Simpson.

Rushworth was forced to fend off four balls as nightwatchman alongside Jennings, after Steven Finn (1-23) clean bowled MacLeod for 13.

Middlesex wicketkeeper John Simpson said:

"It was a bit tricky early on this morning with some weather around and it did a little bit.

"I tried to bat to lunch because we knew if we got in we'd have a chance to bat for a while and it was nice to get some runs.

"It pleasing to get a total like that and we probably should have got a few more, but hopefully we can do the business tomorrow.

"The pitch has been pretty good, docile at times, but a few balls have nipped around at times. There's enough in it for the bowlers, so you've got to try to put the ball in a good area often enough and induce an edge or a false shot.

"It's skidding on nicely for the batsmen, maybe a little two-paced if anything, but still a good wicket.

"I feel like I've been in a good place with my game, but haven't really kicked on, so it's been a little bit disappointing and I've just got to try to be ruthless when I get the chance to bat."

Durham batsman Keaton Jennings said:

"The new ball poses a big challenge and they struck up front and got a couple more later.

"Going into tomorrow we need to get a partnership going and take the game to them a bit and, with the ball getting old, that will happen.

"Big runs are on the board and we need to bat properly and get as much as we can.

"No one wants to see a fellow player (Tim Murtagh) leave the field through injury in any circumstances, so we'd much prefer he was bowling at us from that perspective.

In general, with a three-pronged seam attack, it puts a lot of pressure on Finn and Harris, so if we can get into the other bowlers in longer spells then we're in a good place.

"We've got to make sure we get through the first hour tomorrow because they'll come out fighting and, if we can get through it, hopefully we can make the most of it later in the day."

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