Lawrence drives Essex on with a super century 

Brian Jeeves

Lancashire v Essex – LV= Insurance County Championship Division One – Stanley Park, Blackpool – Day Three – Report

Essex 282 and 292/8 (53.3 overs)
Lancashire 145
Essex won the toss and elected to bat
Essex lead Lancashire by 429 runs with two-second innings wickets standing

Sam Cook and Paul Walter produced productive bowling performances, while Dan Lawrence excelled with the bat as Essex finished day three of their Essex’s LV= Insurance County Championship Division One encounter with Lancashire at Blackpool in a strong position.

Sam Cook (Courtesy of Essex Cricket)

Having already claimed the wicket of Luke Wells during the final session of day two, Cook returned figures of four for 42, while Walter chipped in with 3/20 as the home side were dismissed inside 45 overs for 145.

Josh Bohannon top-scored for Lancs with 44 off 107 balls. Meanwhile, Phil Salt was unbeaten on 35. Nevertheless, Essex was led by 137 runs and appeared to be in the driving seat.

But Lancs were not quite ready to throw in the towel. Tom Bailey and Will Williams claimed the wickets of Nick Browne and Alastair Cook to leave Essex on 0/2 before Williams added the scalp of Tom Westley with the visitors now floundering on 27/3.

But Lawrence arrived to score a superb 135 off 125 balls. His innings 207-minute included eight 4s and nine 6s. Matt Critchley contributed 40, while Doug Bracewell was unbeaten on 61 at the close with Essex now 429 runs to the good. Bailey, with 3/71, took his match figures to nine for 130.

Dan Lawrence (Courtesy of Essex Cricket)

Earlier, inclement weather ensured only twenty-eight balls possible on day one hampering Stanley Park celebrating hosting its one-hundredth first-class. When play resumed on day two,

Westley hit 135 off 238 balls to secure his twenty-eighth first-class hundred. Meanwhile, Walter scored 76 from 119, helping Essex to a first-innings total of 282.

Speaking to Jamie Bowmen from the ECB Reporters Network, Essex Head Coach, Anthony McGrath, said: “It’s been a weird week with the weather and we didn’t know what to expect but we managed to get a good lead and then we needed to bat well which we did.

“Dan Lawrence was amazing today – absolutely amazing. The way he played put the pressure back on Lancashire and he looked to score all the time. Doug Bracewell and Dan have put on 100 there in the last nine overs with everyone on the boundary – it’s amazing.

“We’re in a good position but we still know it’s a lot of hard work because it’s still a good pitch but to lose a day to rain and be 429 in front sets up a good day and we hope the rain stays away.”

Play resumes on Thursday at 11am.

Lancashire: Keaton Jennings (Capt), Luke Wells, Josh Bohannon, Dane Vilas, Rob Jones, Phil Salt (WK), Colin de Grandhomme, Tom Hartley, Jack Blatherwick, Tom Bailey, Will Williams

Essex: Alastair Cook, Nick Browne, Tom Westley (Capt), Dan Lawrence, Matthew Critchley, Paul Walter, Simon Harmer, Will Buttleman (WK), Doug Bracewell, Sam Cook, Jamie Porter

Umpires: PJ Hartley and SJ O’Shaughnessy
Scorers: C Rimmer and P Parkinson
Match Referee: Will Smith

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Brian Jeeves

Email: sport@yellowad.co.uk