On the opening day of Gloucestershire’s match against Durham in the LV= Insurance County Championship Division Two at Seat Unique Riverside, Matt Parkinson collected three wickets to halt Gloucestershire’s momentum.
Miles Hammond provided a change of pace with a scorching fifty to help the visitors reach 170 for 2 before Parkinson led the Durham comeback. Chris Dent impressed at the top of the order with a sturdy knock of 85.
Before rain forced an early end to day one, the legspinner reduced Gloucestershire to 280 for 6 by eliminating Hammond, Grant Roelofson, James Bracey, and Matthew Potts. Dent was also added to the list of casualties.
Gloucestershire chose to bat at Seat Unique Riverside after winning the toss. In the first half hour, Potts and Ben Raine tested their mettle against the visitors’ opening partnership of Dent and Ben Charlesworth with the Kookaburra ball, beating the bat on numerous occasions without being rewarded. Potts’ perseverance paid off when Charlesworth sliced a timid drive straight to Parkinson at mid-on, giving him the wicket.
The morning session belonged to Gloucestershire as Dent displayed his skill at the wicket to repel dangerous bursts from Durham’s lethal attack, which included new addition Migael Pretorius. Dent and Ollie Price scored 66 and appeared ready to put the visitors down at lunch.However, Price’s lack of focus cost Pretorius his maiden Durham wicket.
Dent had to wait until after the break to complete the single needed to reach his second season fifty, but his knock still served as an important cornerstone for the Gloucestershire innings. Dent was cautious with his approach, but after lunch, Hammond launched an assault on the Durham bowlers. Parkinson was beaten by the right-hander, who smashed back-to-back sixes into the leg-side boundary as he quickly reached fifty from 43 balls.
Parkinson would eventually stop running for 52 as Scott Borthwick shifted the session’s direction with a superb grab above his head at cover. Before the England seamer launched a stunning delivery to hit his outside edge for an astounding 85, Dent had frustrated Potts in the morning session. Their battle continued into the afternoon.
Although both were later bowled by Parkinson to help the home team’s tail, Roelofsen and Bracey pushed Gloucestershire to their first batting point. Before the day was over due to rain, Zafar Gohar and Josh Shaw were left to finish the innings. The visitors were 20 runs short of earning a second batting bonus point.