Nottinghamshire ended the second day of their LV= County championship match against Durham on an imposing 231-4 in their second innings, an overall lead of 263 after earlier dismissing the home side for just 129.
There were several contenders for ‘man of the day’ in an excellent all-round performance which saw the county dominate all three sessions, but particular mention must go to Michael Lumb, who ended the day on 104 not out, his maiden century for the county.
"All of the time in rehab and in the gym now feels worthwhile and today I feel I got some reward.” - Michael Lumb
“That was one of my better hundreds,” he said. “It’s certainly one of the most satisfying and as it’s my first for Notts it’s a bit more special.”
After undergoing ankle surgery in the winter, the former Hampshire player said he was delighted to be back scoring runs. “I’m happy with the way it’s going now after the injury. All of the time in rehab and in the gym now feels worthwhile and today I feel I got some reward.”
Whilst Lumb would take a starring role later in the day, Nottinghamshire’s seamers couldn’t have wished for a better opening session, one which saw them pick up the final seven Durham wickets, for only 74 runs, in just 90 minutes.
Resuming from their overnight position of 55-3, with Ben Stokes and Dale Benkenstein at the crease, the home side added nine runs before running into their first spot of difficulty.
Benkenstein (10) edged Adams to first slip, where Alex Hales took a comfortable catch in front of his face. Adams always makes it his responsibility to remove the left-handers in the opposition ranks but was rendered redundant as Phillips then enjoyed a hot streak by removing three of them himself in quick succession.
Stokes chopped on, for 33, and was quickly followed back by Ian Blackwell (0), who found Neil Edwards at second slip.
Phil Mustard, Durham’s skipper, led a charmed life, after appearing to nick the ball through to Chris Read but despite all the Notts side celebrating, umpire Neil Bainton said, “Not out”.
The reprieve didn’t last for long as he then edged Phillips to third slip, to give the former Somerset bowler final figures of 4-42, his best for Notts.
Phillips made way for Andy Carter at the Finchale End and the big fast bowler helped himself to the last three wickets. Borthwick (6) unluckily chopped on, Onions (6) was caught by Fletcher at long leg and last man Claydon (2) presented Hales with his second slip catch of the morning.
Nottinghamshire’s openers survived a tricky six-over period up to the luncheon interval, with Hales scoring all of the eleven runs that were on the board.
A mistimed pull off Onions cost Edwards (5) his wicket, soon after the restart – Stoneman taking the catch at square leg. Hales didn’t let the wicket inhibit his stroke- play as he hit Claydon for three boundaries in four balls during the following over.
Hales, at his imperious best, threatened to take the game away from Durham as he monopolised his stand with Lumb in front of the watching England selector James Whittaker.
His fifty contained eight boundaries and came from 63 deliveries. Crucially, all of those deliveries had been bowled by seamers. As soon as Ian Blackwell’s slow left arm was introduced, Hales (57) perished. Charging at the spinner he could only balloon the ball up to Stokes at extra cover.
Samit Patel (5) went cheaply, again to Blackwell, to leave Notts on 118-3. At that point Lumb, supported by James Taylor, took over.
The left-hander had ridden his luck early on, getting off the mark with an edge that flew between the ‘keeper and first slip. Combining solid defence with punishing boundaries, he was unbeaten on 49 at tea but reached his fifty shortly afterwards (103 balls 8x4).
Taylor was happy to play the anchor role and his two innings in the game saw him occupy three hours and twenty minutes at the crease.
Lumb reached his 13th first class century (159 balls 15x4) with a drive down the ground but lost Taylor (37) in the same Stokes over.
Chris Read eased it through to the close, with Notts in a dominant position and the potential to increase their advantage on the third morning.