George Hill said simplicity was the key to success with the ball on day two as Yorkshire enjoyed a productive day against Durham at the Seat Unique Riverside.

Hill claimed 4-43 as Durham were bowled out for 227 in reply to Yorkshire’s first-innings 254.

In the second innings, he watched Dawid Malan and Jonny Bairstow share an unbroken 50 stand for the fourth wicket to help the visitors reach 91-3 at close, a lead of 118. 

“It was nice to be fair,” said all-rounder Hill of his own performance.

“The wicket was still nibbling around a bit, and with it being so wet this morning on the outfield it didn’t swing at all. It was just a case of me bowling the same ball every single time and hoping the odd one nipped and kept low. 

“We just tried to keep it as a dry as possible and bowl straight to bring bowled and lbw into the game.

“If we’re being critical this morning, during that partnership between Robinson and Clark, we bowled a few too many loose balls. We know they’re quite strong square of the wicket, and we spoke about that at lunch. But, at the same time, they’re allowed to play well.”

Ollie Robinson and Graham Clark shared one of two half-century stands for Durham, the other being for the tenth wicket between Ajaz Patel and Bas de Leede. 

“That was annoying,” said Hill. “To be fair, Patel looked like he could bat. He didn’t look like a genuine number 11. 

“That’s another thing we’ve spoken about, being really ruthless when we’ve got them nine down and killing it there and then.”

On a tricky pitch showing signs of uneven bounce – more so balls keeping low – Yorkshire were in a spot of bother at 41-3 second time around. But Malan and Bairstow dug in expertly to take the sting out of the situation.

Hill added: “It just shows how good Jonny and Mala are, especially for Jonny with the way England play. They try to put the opposition on the back foot, but he soaked up the pressure there and they played beautifully.

“It was pretty minging conditions for cricket today. It was freezing and a bit mizzly. 

“Hopefully the sun comes out tomorrow and the wicket gets a bit better and the outfield quickens up. Then, towards the back end of our innings it goes underground, which would be big for us trying to bowl them out.”

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