|Specsavers County Championship Division One, Cloudfm County Ground (day two):|
|Yorkshire 50: S Cook 5-28, Siddle 4-7 & 329: Brook 124; Siddle 4-65|
|Essex 142 & 97-4: Lawrence 48; Patterson 4-21|
|Essex (3 pts) need 141 more runs to beat Yorkshire (3 pts)|
Harry Brook’s maiden first-class century and Steven Patterson’s 4-21 gave Yorkshire hope of victory over Essex on day two at Chelmsford.
Resuming on 161-2, teenager Brook was eventually out for 124 as Joe Root (35) and a valuable 29 from Jack Leaning helped Yorkshire to 329 all out.
Essex, chasing 238 to win, started well before Patterson removed Alastair Cook (26) and Tom Westley in the 10th over.
Nick Browne and Ravi Bopara also departed before Essex closed on 97-4.
Seamer Patterson twice took two wickets in an over, reducing the hosts to 34-2 and then 55-4, with England batsman Westley registering a pair.
Skipper Ryan ten Doeschate (27 not out) and Daniel Lawrence saw the defending champions to stumps without any further loss, and Essex require another 141 runs to win.
It would be an amazing turnaround, though, if Yorkshire emerge the victors after being bowled out for just 50 in their first innings on day one, when a total of 22 wickets fell.
However, Essex’s target could have been more daunting if the dismissal of England captain Root with the Tykes 276-3 in their second innings had not sparked a collapse which saw them lose their last seven wickets for 53 runs.
Australia bowler Peter Siddle took 4-65 for match figures of 8-72, while Jamie Porter (3-89) helped to clean up the Yorkshire tail.
Essex captain Ryan ten Doeschate:
“When they were 276-3, 180-odd ahead, we were looking at something over 300, but getting seven wickets for 53 runs gives us a chance. At lunch, they were definitely in the ascendancy. But we’ve probably got level and 238 is probably a fair chase on this wicket. We’ve ridden the wave and it’s now just who can play better.
“If we bat 80 overs we’ll win. We won’t have to worry about the new-ball. We’ll have to make sure we bat another 40 overs and we’ll be close.
“If you’re chasing a score you’re looking for one of those top four batters to essentially get a score. One of them gets a score then you win. As with the bowlers, we have become accustomed to them turning out phenomenal performances.”
Yorkshire centurion Harry Brook:
“I’ve trained really hard recently and it’s really nice to get some runs in first-team cricket. It’s my first score over 50, so I’m quite happy, although I just wish I’d got a few more. I got out playing a shocking shot.
“It was good batting with Joe Root. him. I learnt a lot and we put on a few runs. When I got my hundred he just said, ‘Well done. Carry on’. Hundreds are good but just hundreds aren’t good enough.
“It’s been the strangest game I’ve ever played in. 20 wickets in two sessions is ridiculous, unheard of. It’s been a strange one so far. I’m looking forward to the outcome.”