Yorkshire followed their captain’s morning orders to perfection on day three of their Specsavers County Championship match against Kent at Canterbury as they close in on victory.

The White Rose set a victory target of 384 with eight overs left in the day and then struck three times with the ball, leaving the hosts tottering at 34-3.

Earlier, Gary Ballance starred with 159 and Jack Leaning 69, the pair sharing 188 for the fourth wicket, batting through the morning unbroken to set the tone for a dominant day.

“I’m really pleased,” said coach Andrew Gale.

“Steve Patterson spoke really well at the start of the day and asked us to try and win all three sessions, and that’s what the players have done today.

“The partnership in that first session with Gary and Jack took the wind out of Kent’s sails and put us in a really strong position and allowed us to bat on down the order with some valuable contributions.

“To come out and bowl really good lines and lengths and put Kent under pressure with probably some fatigued minds, picking up three wickets, was an extra bonus.

“Gary played beautifully, as he has done all season for us.

“The wicket’s got a bit slower, although there’s still plenty there. Our attack’s a lot different and more experienced than their attack.

“But we had to drag it back after the first innings when we didn’t fill ourselves with glory. We were quite poor with the bat.

“I thought the bowlers did a terrific job in the first innings, and then with the bat we had to tick some partnerships off and give ourselves a chance in the game. Now we’re in the box seat.

“It was a really important partnership this morning.

“We knew Kent would come at us. I’m sure their team talk was, ‘Let’s try to win the first hour’. If they’d have done that, we’d have been under immense pressure.

“I thought Jack showed all his maturity.

“He’s played a lot of cricket, and the stage was set for him.

“That’s the sort of player Jack is. He can get stuck in, is gutsy and plays well under pressure. I’m really pleased for him.”

An image of Lauren Winfield-Hill and Adil Rashid, with the Yorkshire logo and Northern Diamonds logo in the middle

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