James Anderson keeps Lancashire on top against Durham

James Anderson was among the wickets for Lancashire      Picture: Getty Images
James Anderson was among the wickets for Lancashire Picture: Getty Images
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A two-wicket burst from England’s James Anderson ensured Lancashire will go into the third day of their Specsavers County Championship Division Two clash with Durham in a dominant position.

The visitors closed on 199-5, still trailing Lancashire’s first innings score by 138 runs, but it was a vintage spell from the legendary paceman that brought the crowd to their feet in the final session.

Anderson dismissed both Cameron Bancroft and Graham Clark in quick succession, with Clark becoming the veteran’s 950th first class victim.

Resuming on 275-5, the Red Rose did not hang around with the bat.

Steven Croft was the first wicket to fall for 42 as Bancroft pouched a fine leaping catch at second slip off Brydon Carse.

Moments later, Dane Vilas’ crucial knock of 72 ended when he toe-ended a straight drive to Nathan Rimmington off Chris Rushworth.

Lancashire went past 300 and secured a third bonus point before Saqib Mahmood (2) was trapped in front by Rimmington, who then accounted for Graham Onions (0), who was caught behind.

Josh Bohannon swung the bat to reach an unbeaten 33, but Anderson offered little resistance, chipping a simple chance to Clark to leave Rimmington with figures of 4-74 and Lancashire all out for 337.

In reply, Bancroft and Alex Lees coped admirably with Anderson and Onions.

Bancroft was the chief enforcer, hitting eight boundaries on his way to reaching his half-century and playing the dominant role in an opening stand of 70 runs, before Lees (16) was caught by Anderson to give Mahmood his first wicket.

Mahmood proceeded to produce an excellent spell of bowling with Bancroft, who was joined by Gareth Harte, having to be at his very best to keep the young paceman from gathering further wickets.

The pair had put on 66 when Onions finally made the breakthrough, bowling Harte for 14 and sparking an extraordinary period of play which saw Durham lose three wickets for no runs in 17 balls.

Clark (0) and then Bancroft (77) departed after the Australian’s stumps were splayed by a jubilant Anderson.

Jack Burnham and Liam Travaskis occupied the crease for the majority of the day’s last hour, compiling a partnership of 61 for the fifth wicket, before Burnham edged Liam Livingstone to Anderson at slip for 26, to leave Durham 199-5 at the close of play.