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Malan: "It was nice to get some runs"

— 28 July 2020

The friendly nature of the clash between the two counties gave the England T20 star a second innings after he was dismissed for 12 before lunch, a knock ended when he edged a loose drive at Matthew Salisbury into the slip cordon.

He returned after lunch to hit seven fours in 113 balls, warming up nicely for the season proper.

His first port of call is another meeting with Durham at Emirates Riverside on Saturday – Yorkshire’s North Group opener in the Bob Willis Trophy.

Looking a bit further ahead, though, the White Rose end that campaign with three Headingley home games against Derbyshire, Lancashire and Leicestershire.

“I felt a bit rusty actually,” reflected Malan at close of play.

“The first 20-odd balls I felt alright, and then I played a wafty drive, which you’re not supposed to do at Headingley, and got out.

“The second time around I found a game-plan which could suit the way I’d play at this ground.

“It was nice to get some runs doing it that way and curbing my natural instincts a little bit.

“The times I’ve played at Headingley before, I’ve found it really hard to start because it has a bit more tennis ball bounce than most places.

“I find I have to work a lot harder for runs early. But once you get in, it’s such a fast-scoring ground.

“The second innings compared to the first, I gave myself time to get in rather than putting pressure on the bowlers too early.

“It’s that give and take trying to adjust my game to that.”

Durham bowled superbly today, with Malan expecting more of the same when Saturday comes.

The Riverside pitch has, in years gone by, been a bit of a batsman’s graveyard. But, the left-hander countered: “The Riverside has actually been reasonably good (for batting) over the last few years.

“There’s a massive myth that it does all sorts, which it probably does more consistently over a 90-over period. But there’s still a lot of runs to be had there.

“I’ve always found the more attacking you are at Durham, the more chances you get to score runs. When you sit in there, there’s always one with your name on.

“They bowled well, and they’ve actually got a very good attack.

“There’s a lot said about (the difference in quality between) Division One and Division Two, but Durham have always had a strong bowling attack.

“I think they’ll get Brydon Carse back from England after he was just left out of their white ball squad.

“James Franklin, their coach, has got some headaches there were Coughlin, Carse, Raine and Rushworth and all the other guys who bowled well.

“It’s always a test going up to Durham. They’re a competitive team who fight like hell.”

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