Hundred hero Shan Masood hailed a fantastic first day for Yorkshire against Glamorgan in Cardiff, admitting his pride at a series of contributions to an imposing batting performance.
Captain Masood won the toss, elected to bat and ended the day on 113 not out in 330-3. But he was backed up expertly by Fin Bean’s 93, Adam Lyth’s 49 and George Hill’s 51 not out.
Yorkshire’s top order excelled on a slow pitch first used for the ODI international here on Friday.
The day started at 12.10pm following rain, though the toss did take place on time at 10.30am in a short dry window. The covers came off just moments beforehand but went back on within minutes of the Pakistan international electing to bat as the rain returned.
He said: “It was a bit chaotic at the start of the day. They just removed the covers before the toss, and we were taken by surprise that it was the same pitch they played the England v New Zealand ODI on.
“It was going to be a tricky decision with the overheads and rain around.
“Also, we looked at if there’s going to be a fourth day, how will the wicket play on that fourth day. I’m glad the boys said they wanted to bat in that short space of time.
“Our openers were brilliant in the way they set the game up.
“It’s a different wicket, and it requires a different method to bat on. You have to accumulate, run hard and take a lot of singles because once they spread the field, the boundary options were never going to be easy. There was a bit of grip for the spinner.
“I’m very proud to see how some of the younger boys – George Hill and Fin Bean – applied themselves. Adam Lyth obviously as well.”
This was Masood’s first century in Yorkshire colours.
“Nineties are always nervous,” he smiled.
“From the late eighties to a hundred, there was one two and everything else was a single. It took its time. It was small, short yard passes from a quarterback rather than a Hail Mary pass.
“On 96, I was tempted to go down the ground and smash one. But I’ve had a few bad experiences with that.”
Masood has opened the batting for Yorkshire this year. He did so on debut against Durham at the Riverside in May. But he has since dropped down the order and came in at three today.
It’s clear from his comments, though, that he’s an opener at heart. That is his natural position.
“They say as an opening batter, there are going to be more low scores than high scores,” he said. “And some of the greatest openers in the world have always made sure that when they’ve had that century, they’ve made it big.
“As an opener, that’s always the task. We’ll see whether it happens or not. Tomorrow is a new day.”
The first port of call tomorrow is for Yorkshire to pass 450 for maximum batting points and then look to get bowling.
Masood added: “We were speaking about. If you want to get 20 wickets on this wicket, you probably have to look to bat once.
“We’ve set ourselves a good platform, but how do we take it on tomorrow. There’s going to be a new ball in a couple of overs. They’ve bowled well with a good attack. It will be a challenge.”