Yorkshire were made to work hard for their five wickets in decent early season batting conditions as Nottinghamshire enjoyed the better of the opening day of the Specsavers County Championship campaign at Trent Bridge.
Inspired by Joe Clarke’s century on Championship debut for the county, Notts closed on 324-5 from 96 overs in front of a crowd of nearly 2,500.
Opener Ben Slater hit 76 off 163 balls before Clarke top-scored with 109 not out off 181.
Captain Steve Patterson was the pick of Yorkshire’s bowlers, returning 2-62 from 24 overs, while Duanne Olivier also struck twice (2-74 from 20).
The South African fast bowler will certainly bowl on more helpful pitches this summer, with this one lacking pace and not too dissimilar to that produced for a late season draw between the two counties here last year.
Slater and Ben Duckett shared 75 for the first wicket to help lay the platform before lunch, and the latter was mighty frustrated when he top-edged a pull at Patterson to Matthew Waite at long-leg in the 21st over to fall for 43.
Left-handed Slater then shared 50 for the second wicket with Chris Nash either side of lunch and 47 with Clarke through the afternoon.
Slater hit a century in this fixture last season having hit a one-day ton against Yorkshire shortly before leaving Derbyshire.
But he fell 24 runs short of a third hundred against the White Rose in last four innings when he feathered behind an attempted hook at Olivier, leaving the score at 172-3 in the 50th.
Earlier, Waite had trapped Nash lbw at the start of the afternoon’s third over as Notts fell to 125-2 in the 34th.
While Slater arrived at Trent Bridge for the latter stages of last summer, Clarke remained with Worcestershire and played against Yorkshire in the final game of 2018 at New Road, which the visitors won comfortably.
Yorkshire were rewarded with two quick wickets after tea as the Notts progress was stymied.
Clarke and captain Steven Mullaney had shared 54 for the fourth wicket by the time the latter, who made 31, edged a forcing drive off the back foot against Olivier to second slip, where Adam Lyth took a sharp catch as the score fell to 226-4 in the 66th over – the second of the evening.
Almost eight overs later, Patterson claimed his second wicket when Samit Patel cut to Harry Brook, who took to an excellent catch at point to leave Notts at 249-5.
England Test captain Joe Root bowled 12 cheap overs of spin, mixing between off and leg-spin, including a handful of them shortly before Yorkshire took the new ball for the final hour and a bit of play.
Unfortunately, though, there was no further success as England Lions man Clarke moved towards his 14th career first-class century.
He reached his milestone off 165 balls with 15 fours and shared another half-century stand with Tom Moores, Notts’ fourth of the day. Their partnership currently stands at 75 in 23 overs.
While the pitch looks decent to bat on, Yorkshire’s four-man seam attack will be keen to make early inroads on day two to ensure Notts don’t pile on a score which leaves them needing to bat for the best part of two and a half days to save the game.
Wicketkeeper Moores will begin day two unbeaten on eleven.