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County Championship: Yorkshire beat Gloucestershire by six wickets as Dawid Malan and Harry Brook star

Harry Brook
Harry Brook followed up his first-innings century with an unbeaten 56 to guide Yorkshire to victory
LV= County Championship Division One, Seat Unique Stadium, Bristol (day four)
Gloucestershire 227 & 359: Bracey 177, Patterson 4-43
Yorkshire 376 & 213-4: Malan 65, Brook 56*, Singh-Dale 2-30
Yorkshire (22 pts) beat Gloucestershire (3 pts) by six wickets

Dawid Malan and Harry Brook struck half-centuries as Yorkshire sealed a six-wicket victory over Gloucestershire in their season-opening fixture.

Malan hit 65 at a run-a-ball before Brook took charge, guiding the White Rose home with an unbeaten 56.

Gloucestershire had earlier set them a tricky target of 211 thanks to James Bracey’s career-best 177.

But, despite losing early wickets, Brook and Harry Duke (17 not out) wrapped up the visitors’ win.

Resuming with their lead only just into three figures, Gloucestershire set out with attacking intent as Bracey and Zafar Gohar went for their shots and stretched the seventh-wicket partnership to 104.

Haris Rauf (3-96) eventually made the breakthrough, with Adam Lyth holding a sharp slip catch above his head to remove Gohar (40), but Bracey battled on to reach 150 before the lunch interval.

Running out of partners, the left-hander then launched a frenzied assault on Rauf, hooking the Pakistan seamer for three sixes to haul Gloucestershire’s advantage above 200 before he holed out to Steven Patterson (4-43).

  • Relive Sunday’s County Championship action as it happened

That left the visitors chasing 211 from 60 overs, but they slumped to 30-2 in the face of some tight bowling from the Gloucestershire seamers.

Matt Taylor had Adam Lyth caught off a top-edged hook, while the impressive Ajeet Singh-Dale splayed Jack Wharton’s stumps with an unplayable yorker before Malan and George Hill (36) got Yorkshire back on track with a stand of 81.

Malan began to accelerate after tea, pummelling Singh-Dale for three fours in an over and, although he perished to an acrobatic boundary catch by Ryan Higgins, Brook proved more than capable of picking up the baton.

The 23-year-old, who top-scored in Yorkshire’s first innings with 101, built on that with a classy half-century from just 46 deliveries before Duke wrapped up victory with a ramp shot to the boundary off Graeme van Buuren.

Yorkshire claim 22 points from their first game of the campaign while Gloucestershire are without a win from their first two games back in the top division.

Gloucestershire captain Graeme van Buuren:

“I think everybody is allowed to feel disappointed, but to take such a high quality team down to the last few overs has to be pleasing. It shows that we’re competing and not just folding, and that we deserve our place in Division One.

“We stayed in there fighting until the end and there are so many positives we can take from the game. There were two fantastic innings from James Bracey and our overseas professional (Marcus Harris), both of whom showed their class.

“I was proud of the boys because they demonstrated a never say die attitude and fought until the end. We’ve batted in the worst of the conditions in both games we have played so far and that’s been unfortunate. But the boys have responded to the challenge really well.”

Yorkshire batsman Dawid Malan:

“It was nice too get a win and for the boys to concentrate on some cricket. Winning in the way we did is fantastic, especially under new leadership and new direction.

“James Bracey played a really good knock to keep us out there a bit longer. Fortunately, our bowlers were able to wrap things up and give us something to chase, and we were able to finish it really well.

“We know that, when we have all our players available, we have a very strong squad on paper. In the meantime, it’s up to us senior professionals to bring the younger ones along. We’ve seen that with Harry Brook in this game. He is learning how to play certain situations and is fast becoming a senior player himself.”

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