Published: 13th September, 2017
Yorkshire replied strongly after Surrey had posted a mammoth first innings total of 592 in the Specsavers County Championship match at the Kia Oval, in which Kumar Sangakkara and Ben Foakes had completed superlative second day hundreds.
At stumps Yorkshire had reached 171 for 1, with openers Shaun Marsh and Tom Kohler-Cadmore putting on 162 in 48 overs of defiance to show clearly that there is plenty of fight left in the 2014 and 2015 champions.
Marsh remains 77 not out while Kohler-Cadmore made 78 before becoming a maiden championship scalp for Surrey’s 25-year-old slow left-armer Freddie van den Bergh, who bowled tidily in a long spell from the Pavilion End but had to wait until the last ball of his 15th over for Kohler-Cadmore to slice to Ryan Patel, diving forward from backward point.
Both Marsh and Kohler-Cadmore handled seam and spin equally well, with new ball bursts from Sam Curran, Rikki Clarke and Stuart Meaker being repulsed as efficiently on what is still an excellent surface as the twin spin threat of Gareth Batty, the veteran Surrey captain and off spinner, and Van den Bergh on championship debut.
Sangakkara had earlier eased to a magnificent 164 from 187 balls, with three sixes and 21 fours, and it was a seventh century of the summer for the remarkable 39-year-old, in his 12th championship innings. In all, he has now scored 1250 championship runs at an average of 113.63.
Foakes, however, the 24-year-old keeper-batsman who is pushing hard for an Ashes tour place, did not lose much in comparison even with Sangakkara in his own 110 from 174 balls, with 19 fours, also oozing class in a memorable fourth wicket partnership which began just before tea on the first day and was eventually worth 258 in 55 overs.
Pushing on from an overnight 398 for 3, in which they had already reached 85 and 64 respectively, Sangakkara and Foakes entertained a good-sized crowd with a brilliant exhibition of batting in which effortless big hits were mixed with beautifully deft touches as the pair added 115 in a little over 20 overs in the opening session.
Sangakkara was eventually caught at long leg, mis-hitting a pull at Jack Brooks, who then had Ollie Pope caught at second slip for a first ball duck. And, by lunch, Brooks had also bowled Curran for 5 with one that seemed to keep low and finally ended Foakes’s fun, courtesy of a fine tumbling catch by keeper Andrew Hodd from an edged drive.
After lunch, Clarke hit out to reach 41 before becoming a third late victim for seamer Steven Patterson, who had also removed Van den Bergh and Meaker in successive balls.