Hampshire v Yorkshire: Gary Ballance's double century secures draw for Tykes

Gary Ballance reaches 100 against Hampshire
Gary Ballance has scored three County Championship centuries this season - all against Hampshire
Specsavers County Championship Division One, Ageas Bowl (day four):
Hampshire 455: Vince 147, Berg 99*; Coad 4-71
Yorkshire 231: Ballance 108 & 399-6: Ballance 203*, Lees 70; Abbott 3-65
Hampshire (11 pts) drew with Yorkshire (8 pts)
Match scorecard

A double century from captain Gary Ballance helped Yorkshire secure a draw against Hampshire.

Ballance (203 not out) hit his second hundred of the match, and third ton in five innings, as Yorkshire lost just three wickets on the final day.

Following-on still 46 runs behind on day four Ballance, who made 103 in the first innings, proved immovable.

He and Tim Bresnan (37) dug in for 42 overs in a 94-run stand for the sixth wicket, which put paid to a home win.

Ballance, whose last Test for England came in their defeat by Bangladesh last October, has scored 120, 55, 108 and 203 not out against Hampshire in their two County Championship encounters this season.

Yorkshire, runners-up last season, have won one, lost one and drawn one from their opening three games while Hampshire, reinstated at Durham's expense following relegation in September, remain undefeated with a win and two draws.

Their hopes of a second victory against Yorkshire this season were briefly lifted when Kyle Abbott dismissed England wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow for a single with the first delivery with the second new ball.

With a lead of just 38 at 262-5, Bresnan joined Ballance and was handed a lifeline on 13 when James Vince failed to hang on to a tough slip catch off Abbott.

Reece Topley eventually had Bresnan caught behind after tea, but by then the draw was secured.

Ballance reached his double century with a boundary off Sean Ervine, reaching the landmark off 384 balls with 23 fours to record his highest County Championship score.

Hampshire director of cricket Giles White told BBC Radio Solent:

"We knew it would be hard work, it remained a good wicket all the way through and Gary Ballance played outstandingly, really resilient and very strong mentally.

"When you lose a strike bowler to injury (Brad Wheal) - we've had that in the last two games - it makes it very difficult. But Gareth Berg and Kyle Abbott were outstanding. They did a lot of hard work and showed an awful lot of skill.

"They say good teams are in the field a lot and that's encouraging for us. It's a progression from last year and we are making good sides battle hard for draws."

Yorkshire head coach Andrew Gale told BBC Radio Leeds:

"Given the position we were in, we were backs to the wall. But Gary has had a special game, as he has been for the first couple of games. He has stood up as captain and been resilient but that really was a special knock to save the game.

"On the whole we bowled well but maybe lacked a bit of x-factor like a Liam Plunkett or a Jack Brooks. We toiled well but probably let them off the hook to get 450

We were soft with the bat. We spoke about the mind-set as it definitely wasn't a technical thing. But we showed what Yorkshire cricket is about, if you can't win, don't get beat."

Top Stories