Jonny Tattersall has hailed a hugely productive 10 days of friendly cricket for Yorkshire as they prepare to start the season proper this week.
The White Rose wrapped up their “different” pre-season programme today, the third day of three against Durham MCC Universities at Emerald Headingley.
They batted for the first half of the day before bowling, with Durham reaching 104-0 from 34 overs when the players shook hands on the draw at 5pm.
Adam Lyth pulled the day’s first ball for six and retired on 50 – his second half-century of the match – as the hosts advanced their second innings from 48-0 overnight to 178-5 declared, a lead of 310.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Tattersall captained the side and hit a superb first-innings 111 off 170 balls on Saturday.
This was Yorkshire’s fourth first-team friendly.
The only obvious negative is a side strain suffered whilst bowling on Saturday by Matthew Waite, who is almost certainly out of Thursday’s LV= Insurance County Championship opener against Glamorgan.
Yorkshire started with a pair of two-day games away at Middlesex and Derbyshire before back-to-back three-day University fixtures against Leeds/Bradford and Durham.
“It’s been a different pre-season,” said Tattersall, who would usually have been in the sunnier climes of a South Africa or India with his team-mates but for Coronavirus.
“We’d not really had a chance to practice outside because the weather wasn’t very good in mid-March. So we’ve gone from indoors straight into games.
“But the pitches have all been very good considering how early it is.
“The pitch against Leeds/Bradford was not your typical Headingley pitch for this time of the year. That was a good run out for the batsmen to knock up a few runs.
“It was also a good workout for the bowlers, who didn’t have everything their own way. To have to come up with a few different ideas was good. It was great for them just to get a lot of overs in their legs.
“This game has also been a challenge with a contrasting wicket. It has been nipping around quite a bit.
“It should all stand us in good stead.”
Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Harry Brook and Tattersall all hit centuries against student opposition.
Kohler-Cadmore recorded his against Leeds/Bradford and Brook and Tattersall at the start of this game. There have been a host of other half-centuries besides.
“This squad has so much depth and ability,” said Tattersall.
“Look at Jordan Thompson, for example. He was probably our player of the season last year and is still to come back into the fold when he’s fully fit again (calf injury).
“That depth means we can hopefully keep everybody fresh going through the season because it’s quite a busy schedule. It’s really exciting times.
“Everyone is looking forward to Thursday, getting stuck into some Championship cricket and starting the season off in a positive manner.”
While pre-season games are mainly about time at the crease and overs in the legs, performances are still important for confidence.
“I definitely feel in a good place with my game,” said Tattersall.
“I only started batting at keeping in January, so I had a full three months at the end of the season just going to the gym.
“That’s given me the chance to come into the season feeling fresher. I think I’ve timed it well instead of coming into the season thinking, ‘I’ve done too much batting or keeping’.
“Fingers crossed, I can notch up some more runs and win games.”
Will Fraine also added 48 to Lyth’s 50 today, but he was one of a trio of batsmen to fall to superb Durham Uni catches.
Dom Bess was caught by James Clark running backwards from mid-wicket and diving after a miscued pull at seamer Ollie Sheen.
After lunch, Fraine was caught over his head on the deep square-leg boundary by Tom Price following a pull at Lewis O’Donnell, another seamer.
The same bowler then had David Willey sharply caught at slip by captain Chris Benjamin.
Duanne Olivier (0-14 from seven overs), Willey (0-5 from five) and Bess (0-5 from five) all bowled well as Durham opener Ollie Price finished on 64 not out.