Photos: John Heald Photography
Harry Brook and Steve Patterson were the Yorkshire stars during another enthralling day against Essex at Chelmsford, with the hosts closing day two closing on 97-4 in pursuit of 238.
Yorkshire’s chances of a remarkable come from behind Specsavers County Championship victory remain very good having been bowled out for 50 on day one. Essex need 141 more to win.
Brook completed his maiden first-class, and even first-team, century by posting 124 off 187 balls with 13 fours and a six having started the day on 57.
Then, Patterson struck four times as Essex slipped to 55-4 after tea, including his 350th first-class wicket.
Yorkshire actually lost their last seven wickets for 53 runs during the second half of the afternoon to slip from 276-3 to 329 all out in their second innings.
Australian Peter Siddle finished with four wickets in the innings and eight in the match.
The frustration for the White Rose was that batting had looked pretty straightforward through the morning and early afternoon.
Yorkshire advanced from 161-2 overnight and lost only Che Pujara in the morning, bowled shouldering arms to Siddle for 41.
Brook and Joe Root, who made 35, advanced the score from 190-3 with a fourth-wicket stand of 86 inside 28 overs either side of lunch.
Nineteen-year-old Brook was particularly strong against the spin of Simon Harmer and reached his century off 129 balls. He sped through the nineties, hitting Harmer for two boundaries through the covers.
Only three Yorkshire batsmen have scored centuries before their 19th birthday; Len Hutton, Bill Athey and, most recently, Azeem Rafiq (aged 18).
Brook reached his ton on the stroke of lunch, earning a celebratory hug from England captain Root. It made you wonder how often we may see similar in Test cricket in years to come.
But the pair were the first two of those seven wickets to fall.
Root was bowled off the inside edge as he drove at Ravi Bopara’s medium pacers before Brook miscued Harmer’s off-spin to long-on running in.
New ball seamer Jamie Porter, last season’s leading wicket-taker in Division One with 75, then claimed three of the last four White Rose wickets to fall as they were bowled out on the stroke of tea.
Jack Leaning was the last of them, bowled for 29, having manipulated the strike at the end of the innings with only Ben Coad for company.
If there was any lingering frustration regarding the afternoon flurry of wickets and a couple of early dropped catches – Nick Browne caught and bowled by Jack Brooks on one and Alastair Cook at third slip by Leaning on 20 – that was quickly put to bed by Patterson’s four-for.
He bowled Cook for 26 as he played to leg as the score fell to 34-1 midway through the 10th over, and three balls later it was 34-2 as Tom Westley was trapped lbw for a third successive duck.
The Cook wicket was Patterson’s 350th.
The 34-year-old then repeated the feat of two wickets in an over in the 16th when he uprooted Browne’s middle stump and had Bopara caught at backward point as the score slipped to 55-4.
Dan Lawrence will begin day three unbeaten on 22 and Ryan ten Doeschate 27.