International Cricket

County DIV1 2024, LANCS vs NOTTS 43rd Match Match Report, June 30 – July 03, 2024

Lancashire 344 for 8 (Jennings 183, James 3-53) vs Nottinghamshire

A fourth century of the season by Keaton Jennings steered Lancashire into a strong position on 344 for 8 after the first day of this Vitality County Championship match against Nottinghamshire at Southport.

It was a masterful, battling innings of 183 not out off 258 balls, with 26 fours and four sixes, by Red Rose captain Jennings that held the Lancashire innings together after the visitors had threatened to take charge after lunch.

A sellout crowd had turned up hoping to see James Anderson in action for Lancashire one more time, evinced by the collective groan that rose around the Trafalgar Road ground when it was announced Haseeb Hameed had won the toss and opted to bowl. Those present had to settle for watching one of Anderson’s potential England successors instead.

Dillon Pennington, selected for the first time alongside Anderson in the England squad to face West Indies, put in a strong shift that returned 2 for 70 from 23 overs across five separate spells on a slowish pitch.

Pennington’s lively six-over opening spell conceded just three runs but went without reward and it was the first change bowler Dane Paterson who struck first, nipping one back to bowl Luke Wells for 7.

Jennings and Bohannon steered Lancashire to 59 for 1 at lunch in a session shorn of 22 minutes due to rain but the visitors fought back strongly with three wickets in the afternoon.

Wicketkeeper Joe Clarke, having taken over the gloves from Tom Moores, dropped an edge by Bohannon off Olly Stone but redeemed himself by holding onto a near identical edge by the Lancashire batter off the very next ball.

Pennington snared his first wicket when George Bell edged to second slip for 8 after an uncomfortable 39-ball stay at the crease followed by Matty Hurst tamely chipping Lyndon James to Stone at midwicket for 2 to leave Lancashire 120 for 4 after the Notts attack had skilfully dried up the run scoring during the afternoon.

It was Jennings who held the innings together with a mixture of calculated attack and strong defence that saw the left-hander deposit Paterson over square leg for six while his 16th four brought up a 179-ball hundred.

Jennings found strong support from George Balderson, who made 41 and twice lofted consecutive Liam Patterson-White deliveries into the Harrod Drive gardens overlooking the ground, in an 88-run partnership that wrestled the initiative back for the hosts.

In a lengthy 41-over final session that saw 194 runs scored, Chris Green and Tom Bailey were both lbw to James while Will Williams edged Pennington behind for a duck. But Jennings opened up as started to run out of partners, hammering a tiring attack and taking 47 balls to go from his hundred to 150 as he deposited Stone for six onto the adjacent railway line and ramped Paterson over long-on for six more.

Notts cause was hardly helped by three chances of varying difficulty offered by Jennings being put down during the evening that ended with Lancashire having a strong total that they will look to bolster on Monday – and with, for those spectators attending, Anderson likely to both bat and bowl.

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