Durham's battling Bancroft denies injury-hit Lancashire on final day at Sedbergh

Saqib Mahmood's wickets at Sedbergh School could not seal victory for Lancashire Picture: GETTY IMAGES
Saqib Mahmood's wickets at Sedbergh School could not seal victory for Lancashire Picture: GETTY IMAGES
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A battling innings from Durham captain Cameron Bancroft ensured his side clung on for a determined draw against a Lancashire outfit ruing the loss of two key bowlers on the final day at Sedbergh School.

A battling innings from Durham captain Cameron Bancroft ensured his side clung on for a determined draw against a Lancashire outfit ruing the loss of two key bowlers on the final day at Sedbergh School.

Bancroft held the Lancashire attack at bay for the whole of Durham’s innings, with the Australian finishing unbeaten on 92 to continue his good form with the bat at his new county, who have rallied after a difficult start.

Lancashire were full of hope at tea, having taken five wickets in the day, but with both James Anderson and Liam Livingstone missing from their attack through injury, they id not have the firepower to trouble the brilliant Bancroft, who steered his team to the close alongside an equally committed Ben Raine.

A blistering spell from young paceman Saqib Mahmood had early put Lancashire in pole position to claim a fifth win of the season at Sedbergh School’s inaugural first- class game.

Taking the new ball in place of the injured Anderson, the 22-year-old claimed two victims in his first two overs, clipping Alex Lees’ off-stump after the scoreless batsman had shouldered arms before spreadeagling Gareth Harte’s wickets again for no score.

That left Durham 11-2 and they progressed to 39 by lunch after Bancroft was joined by Jack Burnham, the pair surviving Mahmood’s onslaught to leave the north-easterners requiring another 265 runs to win with eight wickets remaining.

Lancashire continued to push for victory through the middle session, claiming three wickets after lunch, with Burnham becoming the second batsman to be clean bowled shouldering arms when he misjudged a Graham Onions delivery and was dismissed for 20.

However, Lancashire’s bowling options were beginning to look limited and Durham took advantage, with Bancroft and Graham Clarke constructing a fourth-wicket partnership of 69, before Josh Bohannon bowled Clarke for 26 with a delivery that kept low and hit his off-stump.

Liam Trevaskis followed soon after, Onions picking up another wicket when the all-rounder edged to Rob Jones at second slip for three.

Bancroft remained unbeaten on 57 at tea, with Ned Eckersley three not out as Durham prepared to face 35 overs requiring another 182 with five wickets remaining.

Half an hour after tea, the hosts’ hopes were raised again when Eckersley played on to Mahmood, who finished with 3-58.

But it was not to be as Bancroft and Raine (19no) steered Durham to 6pm, when the players shook hands with four overs left and with the score 194-6.

Lancashire finished with 11 points to Durham’s nine and are now second in County Championship division two, three points behind leaders Glamorgan with a game in hand.

The Red Rose start their next four-dayer at Northamptonshire on Sunday.