Steven Croft and Tom Smith give Lancashire edge over Yorkshire

LV= County Championship Division One, Headingley Carnegie
Close, day one: Lancashire 304-7 v Yorkshire
Lancashire 3pts, Yorkshire 2pts
Match scorecard
Live commentary
LV County Championship

Half-centuries from Steven Croft and Tom Smith gave Lancashire the edge after being put into bat by Yorkshire on day one at Headingley.

Ryan Sidebottom (3-51) soon removed Stephen Moore for a duck but all the other Red Rose batsmen contributed.

But it was Croft (54) and Smith (51) who led the way for the visitors, sharing 77 for the fifth wicket.

Sajid Mahmood and Glen Chapple added an unbeaten 53 before bad light ended play 3.3 overs early with their side 304-7.

Yorkshire had South African left-hander Jacques Rudolph back in their side after arriving in the country on Tuesday, and they also gave a first-class debut to 26-year-old fast bowler Iain Wardlaw, although he will make way for Tim Bresnan if he is not required by England for the first Test against India.

There was enough in the pitch to suggest Yorkshire made the right decision to insert their neighbours as Sidebottom beat Paul Horton several times in his opening over before trapping Moore leg before in his second.

He struck again to have Karl Brown caught at first slip by Rudolph, but the home side had to wait until after lunch for their third breakthrough when Ajmal Shahzad had Horton caught behind after extracting some extra bounce.

Sidebottom returned to remove Mark Chilton, before Anthony McGrath dropped a two-handed chance above his head off Croft at 135-4, a miss that proved costly as he and Smith put together a valuable partnership which ended when Croft failed to pick up the last ball before tea from Shahzad and was yorked.

Smith's resistance was ended when he slashed at Wardlaw and was caught behind to give the bowler his maiden first-class wicket, and although Rich Pyrah later pinned Gareth Cross lbw at 251-7, Mahmood and Chapple saw Lancashire safely to the close.


BBC Radio Lancashire's Liam Bradford:

"Lancashire battled the conditions to walk out on top of the first day thanks to great innings from Steven Croft and Tom Smith.

"Honourable mentions must go to Paul Horton and Mark Chilton who helped the Red Rose to lunch only two wickets down and from there a platform could be build.

"Ryan Sidebottom was the pick of the bowlers but even he found the later overs to be hard work."