Yorkshire were set an unlikely victory target of 294 off a minimum 39 overs on the final day of their championship match against Nottinghamshire at Headingley.
Victory on the final day would have returned Yorkshire to the top of the table, leapfrogging over current leaders Somerset, but instead they had to settle for a draw after being set an unlikely victory target of 294 off a minimum of 39 overs.
Resuming the final morning on 102 for two, leading by 60 runs, Nottinghamshire lost three wickets before lunch only for James Taylor and captain Chris Read to forge a 115-run sixth wicket stand and effectively kill Yorkshire’s victory hopes.
Facing a daunting target against a Nottinghamshire attack without seamer Luke Fletcher, who was suffering with a back spasm, Yorkshire chose not to attempt it knowing they needed seven and a half an over and finished on 53 for three after 31 overs.
Frustrated at their inability not to claim a bigger first innings lead than 42 runs on the previous day, Yorkshire quickly made amends with Steve Patterson leading the way with an opening spell of 9-4-14-2, including two wickets in an over.
Former Yorkshire batsman Michael Lumb became Patterson’s first victim, falling one run short of his half-century after edging behind and Samit Patel fell three balls later when he clipped to short mid-wicket to receive a pair in the match – his second successive such disappointment at Headingley.
Yorkshire made further inroads with Tim Bresnan winning an lbw decision against Riki Wessels, but Read and Taylor’s partnership proved difficult to break.
Their only real chance came when Read had reached 53 and Nottinghamshire had extended their lead to 195 on 237 for five, drilling Patterson back down the pitch and he was unable to hold on to the sharp return catch.
There was also an opportunity to claim a run out with the ball diverting to Bresnan at mid-on with both batsmen at the non-striker’s end, but the chance was lost when he threw down the stumps at that end.
Their stand was finally broken when he clipped Bresnan off his legs straight to Adil Rashid at square leg, needing only four for his first championship century of the season.
Bresnan claimed his fourth wicket of the innings when Read’s aggressive innings finally came to an end, picking out Rashid in the deep after hitting nine fours and a six in his 75.
By the time Read fell, he had extended Nottinghamshire’s lead beyond Yorkshire’s reach and with Peter Siddle hitting an equally aggressive 48 off 35 balls, they were able to declare at 335 for eight at tea.
Yorkshire made a solid start to their reply but had a suffered a slightly nervious spell when they lost three wickets in nine overs to slip to 43 for three before captain Andrew Gale and Jonny Bairstow guided them to the close without further loss.
Lees edged Andre Adams behind, who then increased Yorkshire’s anxiety with Jack Leaning mis-timing an attempted pull to mid-on while Adam Lyth was caught at leg-slip off Samit Patel.