Centuries from Mark Stoneman and Ben Stokes, together with Paul Collingwood’s unbeaten 74, helped Durham pile on the runs on day one of the top-of-the-table LV= County Championship clash with Yorkshire at Scarborough.
Ryan Sidebottom dismissed Keaton Jennings and Scott Borthwick for ducks to leave Durham five for two and went on to claim his 600th first-class wicket.
Yet the visitors were never made to regret batting first upon winning the toss as they motored on to 406 for six in front of a 5,500 crowd.
Durham started the match 25.5 points behind leaders Yorkshire with a game in hand, knowing victory would blow the title race wide open.
The only time they looked in any trouble was in the morning’s third over when Sidebottom, bowling from the Peasholm Park end, trapped Jennings and Borthwick lbw in the space of three deliveries.
Sidebottom was rested with figures of 2-14 from six overs and Stoneman duly accelerated in the company of Will Smith, who reached 20 before being superbly held one-handed by Kane Williamson off Jack Brooks.
Stoneman remained in command, reaching his half-century off 70 balls before advancing to 73 out of a lunchtime score of 117 for three.
The left-hander pressed on further after the interval, clearing the ropes off Steven Patterson and cutting the same bowler for four to bring up his third century of the season from just 117 deliveries.
Stokes, included in England’s 50-over squad to face Australia, was also scoring freely and the fourth-wicket pair had put on 128 in 27 overs when Stoneman chased a wide one outside off stump and was caught behind by Jonny Bairstow for 122 to bring Sidebottom his landmark wicket.
Yorkshire were unable to gain much comfort from Stoneman’s departure because a stand of 120 followed, this time between Stokes and Collingwood.
Adil Rashid came back for another spell and was harshly treated by Stokes, who cut and drove for three consecutive boundaries to rush into the seventies.
He was 92 at tea, with Durham 265 for four, but would have been out without addition if Adam Lyth had been able to cling on to a fast chance to his left at second slip off Brooks.
A straight-driven four off Brooks completed Stokes’ century in 136 balls and the all-rounder then slog-swept Rashid for six before falling for 127 attempting to repeat the stroke.
Durham continued to take full advantage of a pitch that flattened out and skipper Collingwood moved past 50 in the company of Phil Mustard.
There was one final breakthrough for Yorkshire prior to the close, Mustard falling lbw for 42 looking to reverse-sweep Kane Williamson. Yet by that stage Durham already had maximum batting points.
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