County Championship: Yorkshire move into lead against Derbyshire thanks to Joe Root
Last Updated: 03/05/13 6:46pm
Joe Root and Jonathan Bairstow both hit big three-figure scores as Yorkshire stacked up the runs on the third day of the County Championship Division One match against Derbyshire.
Root, who will captain England Lions against New Zealand next week, hammered a career-best 236 at Headingley, while Bairstow reached 186. The pair put on 231 together - a Yorkshire record for the fourth wicket against the visitors.
Yorkshire decided the best way to try to force a positive result on a flat pitch was to build as big a lead as possible in reply to Derbyshire's first innings 475 - and by the close they were 597-5 and leading by 122.
Root, who hit 182 in his previous innings against Durham at Riverside last week, completed his 2,000th Championship run when he had made 94. It was in his 52nd innings in the competition - exactly the same number Geoff Boycott and Herbert Sutcliffe had taken to reach a similar landmark.
It was a faultless performance by Root and when he was finally bowled round his legs sweeping at Dan Redfern he had batted for 467 minutes, faced 336 balls and struck 24 fours.
Yorkshire started out on the third morning at 164-1 with Root 75 and Phil Jaques 15, and the pair made untroubled progress towards collecting their side's first batting point of the season.
Root went to his century out of 215 for one from 154 balls with 12 fours but, with the stand worth 92 in 31 overs, Jaques gallantly sacrificed his wicket in order to keep Root at the crease.
The Australian square cut Jon Clare to point, where Wayne Madsen parried the ball and Root set off for a single. Jaques had not left his crease but he then made his dash with his partner well out of his ground.
Skipper Andrew Gale's struggle to find his batting form caused Yorkshire to lose some of their momentum and after scraping together five in 11 overs he scooped former team-mate David Wainwright to Tim Groenewald at mid-off.
Bairstow also made a slow start before engaging top gear and in the over after Root had gone to his 150 he straight drove Wainwright for six.
With paceman Tony Palladino off the field with a side strain, Derbyshire did not take the second new ball until 94 overs had gone but Bairstow sliced Groenewald for four to go to his half-century as Yorkshire headed towards 381 for three in 110 overs, so missing out on a fifth batting bonus point.
At tea, Yorkshire were 381-3 and early in the evening session Root cut Wainwright for a single to complete his double century off 308 deliveries with 20 fours. Then Bairstow drove the left-arm spinner through extra cover to reach three figures from 135 balls with 12 fours and a six.
The stand finally ended at 231 with Root's surprise departure to Redfern; Yorkshire's previous highest for the fourth wicket against Derbyshire was the 211 by Vic Wilson and Willie Watson at Harrogate in 1951.
Redfern would also have accounted for Bairstow had he been able to hold on to a stinging return catch when the batsman was 126 but there was more pain for Derbyshire after that as Bairstow and Gary Ballance went on the sixes trail in a 117 stand in just 14 overs.
In the day's penultimate over, Bairstow straight drove Durston for six but swept the next ball towards the boundary at backward square leg and was caught by Groenewald, his 186 coming off 193 balls with 21 fours and four sixes. Ballance ended unbeaten on 50 from 53 balls with three fours and two sixes.