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22nd April 2010

Durham batsmen dig in on day two

It took about 40 minutes for Durham to sweep up the final two of Hampshire’s wickets with Mitchell Claydon forcing Kabir Ali (18) to edge a short delivery to Phil Mustard.  The Durham keeper also brought about the final wicket, catching Briggs off Plunkett for 7. 

Chasing 345, Durham’s Michael Di Venuto and Kyle Coetzer put on an opening partnership of over a hundred before the latter was bowled just after lunch by spinner Briggs for 47. 

Di Venuto went on to reach 50 (from 87 balls and including seven fours) and was eventually became Briggs second victim after he was trapped lbw for 71, leaving Durham 129-2.

The score moved on to 146 before Dale Benkenstein was bowled by Griffiths for 10, bringing tea forward by an over.

Ian Blackwell and Will Smith returned to the middle after tea and it took just 24 minutes for them to establish a fifty partnership from just 38 deliveries, including eight fours and a six. The pair pushed Durham’s total past the 200 mark with 24 overs remaining in the day bit shortly after Smith, was dropped twice on 7 and 11, was out lbw off a low ball from Ervine for 28.

Ben Stokes came to the crease and settled in enough to hit a massive six and three boundaries early on.  The new ball was taken at the earliest opportunity and Blackwell became its first victim, caught by Adams off Ali for 83.

With three overs left of the day’s play Mark Davies came to the crease as nightwatchman and at the close Durham were 284-5, Stokes 28* and Davies 8*. spoke to Kyle Coetzer at the close for his thoughts on day two, “We’ve got five wickets in hand now so we need to try and get up to their total and then push on from there.  I think it’s the type of wicket where if you put the ball in the right areas you can get something out of it and unfortunately we just lost a few wickets in clumps and a couple of batsmen who got in, including myself, dug in but didn’t manage to push on.

“I need to make the most of these starts, 47 today was a bit disappointing, it would have been good to push on.  It’s nice to batting alongside someone of Michael’s (Di Venuto) quality.   He takes a lot of pressure off and we’ve managed to put together a few hundred run partnerships so it seems to be working quite well.”

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