Ben Coad remains confident Yorkshire can complete an LV= Insurance County Championship victory, despite a Derbyshire fightback at Chesterfield.

Yorkshire are still in the box-seat at the halfway stage of this Division Two fixture. Derbyshire, at 248-4 in their second innings, lead by six runs. 

But their dominance has been significantly eroded by an impressive Derbyshire recovery led by fifth-wicket pair Haider Ali and Leus du Plooy.

Derbyshire, trailing by 242 on first innings, slumped to 17-4 shortly after lunch before Pakistan international Ali made 129 not out and du Plooy an unbeaten 96. 

They shared a fifth-wicket partnership of 231, a Derbyshire record for that wicket in first-class fixtures against Yorkshire. 

“It’s been a new ball pitch. We knew we had to strike with the new ball, and thankfully we did,” said Coad, who equally shared the four early afternoon wickets with Matthew Fisher. 

“The heat’s tough out there, and it’s dried out a lot. It’s a decent pitch. There’s a bit of spin, but not a lot. There’s not a lot for the seamers after the ball gets about 20 overs old. 

“It’s tough work, but we know ourselves that we didn’t bowl our best. 

“We’ll just have to come back in the morning and put that right.

“First up, we were brilliant, but there were a few too many loose balls. If you drop it at all short, it’s so slow and sits up. It’s quite easy to score. We got cut and pulled a bit too much.

“Look, they’re only six ahead, so we know we’re right on top still. If we get a couple of early ones, we’re right in still. 

“Tomorrow, we have to be disciplined. When the new ball comes, we’ll have to strike with that.”

Coad claimed three wickets in the first innings and two and counting in the second.

Fisher claimed five in the first and added two more in the second, including his 100th first-class career wicket – Luis Reece trapped lbw.

“He’s just a great bowler, so it’s great to bowl with him,” praised Coad. “We’ve grown up together in the Academy, second team and now the first team. It’s great to bowl with him at the other end. You know what you’re going to get. 

“I would have liked to bowl with him more but for injuries. It’s great when we do team up together.”

Dawid Malan completed a fine 106 before lunch as Yorkshire made 353 in the first innings, securing three batting bonus points. 

However, having started the day on 272-5, they slipped from 325-5, losing their last five wickets for 28. 

Coad added: “Before the start (of the innings), we’d have been happy with that total. Overall, that’s a pretty good score. But this morning, we’d have wanted a few more runs. We’re a bit disappointed with how we went today.”

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