James Wharton reflected on his own performance at Chesterfield today – but Yorkshire’s hundred hero heaped praise on Vishwa Fernando after the Sri Lankan Test quick laid the platform for a stunning day one against Derbyshire.

Left-arm overseas quick Fernando claimed 5-30 from 10 overs in an expert   swing bowling display as Derbyshire were skittled for just 76 shortly after lunch. He claimed all five of his wickets in a spell which didn’t cost him a run.

Wharton then ended the day on 116 not out – his maiden first-class ton – as Yorkshire finished on 283-5, a lead of 207.

Even at this early stage, it would be a major surprise if Yorkshire didn’t win here at Queen’s Park.

Wharton said: “Vishwa’s been excellent and one of the best overseas we’ve had in the last few years. 

“He’s such a lovely bloke – quiet and unassuming. But he’s an unbelievable operator, as you’ve seen over the last few weeks. 

“You can tell he’s a Test Match bowler.”

On his own ton, which followed one last year in the Vitality Blast, the 23-year-old from Huddersfield continued: “It feels really good – a lot of relief. I’m just happy to get my first one over the line.

“It’s been frustrating the last couple of weeks because I’ve been playing well but getting 20s and getting out in weird ways. I was soft last week at Scarborough. 

“This week, to get a start and kick on, I’m just happy to help the team.

“It’s massive credit to our bowlers because we’ve backed up what we did last week. 

“There’s a bit in it that wicket, it’s done a bit all day. But it’s not an absolute snake-pit.

“For our bowlers to be as disciplined as they were, and our slip cordon is unbelievable at the minute. 

“It isn’t a 70-odd all out pitch or whatever it was, but our bowlers can make it like that. 

“It’s really pleasing we’ve capitalised on that as a batting group, and we’ll carry on tomorrow.”

Wharton was slow to start before settling and excelling:  “I felt good,” he went on. 

“I was triggering to start with and felt like I was going to get out. But I just thought, ‘Stay still’. It seemed to work better than before.”

He shared an unbroken century stand with Jonny Tattersall for the sixth wicket to end the day in style and said: “Jon came in at such a hard time – it’s been dark all day, and him getting 41 was a good effort.”

Wharton was also asked what it felt like to get to a hundred, who he was thinking of and what the reaction was like when he returned to the dressing room at close.

“I was trying to get through the nineties as quick as I could by slogging a few,” he smiled. 

“My family will be chuffed, and I’ll have a text with my dad tonight. 

“To be honest, the lads were all watching the football (England v Slovakia), so they didn’t really care about me. We’ve just equalised, so they’re chuffed with that.

“No, seriously, we have a great team and everyone supports each other’s successes, which is a really nice trait for our group.”

On Derbyshire’s decision to bat first upon winning the toss, Wharton added: “I was confused because we said that we were going t0 bowl and Shan turns around and signals that we’re bowling. I just presumed he’d won the toss. But they had.

“We thought they must have known something we didn’t. I think the idea must have been not to be batting last on. But they were tricky conditions to be batting in at the start.

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