Much more than a Hill of Bean(s) for Yorkshire as youngsters shine

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By Webdesk

Yorkshire 393 for 6 (Bean 114, Hill 101, Tattersall 79) vs. Gloucestershire

Yorkshire young guns Finlay Bean and George Hill posted stellar centuries – 114 and 101 respectively – to ensure their side dominated the opening day of the LV= Insurance County Championship clash with Gloucestershire at Headingley.

Left-handed opener Bean faced 153 balls in his second century of the Division Two season – and the second of the 21-year-old’s fledgling career. It was the main contributor in Yorkshire’s 393 for 6 from 91 overs.

He shared a stand of 57 with Dawid Malan for the third wicket in the morning and then 153 for the fourth either side of lunch with fellow up and comer George Hill who then faced 180 balls and shared 111 for the fifth wicket with Johnny Tattersall.

It was all-rounder Hill’s first century of the summer, with Gloucestershire too loose with the Kookaburra ball being asked to bowl in excellent batting conditions.

Left-arm Taylor stood out like a sore thumb among his peers with three for 43 from 17 overs, including Tattersall up late for 79. Five overs were lost to evening rain.

The game was watched by the new Yorkshire chairman, Harry Chathli, as well as their former coach Jason Gillespie, the County Championship title winning coach, the Australian bowling legend who triumphed with the county in 2014 and 2015.

He is back in the UK for the Ashes and back at Headingley for the first time since leaving. Things have changed dramatically since Gillespie left in late 2016, his side just missing out on a third successive Championship title for Middlesex.

Not only has there been unrest off the field, results have plummeted, culminating in this being a Division Two encounter.

Only Adam Lyth and Matthew Fisher of the current side played four days of cricket during the Australian legend’s golden tenure.

But the performances of two young players who played only in the county’s age group during Gillespie’s tenure should serve as an indication of future prospects.

Lyth’s opening partner Bean, 21, played for Yorkshire Under 14s at Gillespie’s last year in 2016 and Hill for Under 15s last year.

Bean has enjoyed an encouraging start to senior cricket after returning to the club last summer after a short break to work as a mechanic.

He earned a rookie contract last year on the back of a record-breaking 441 in the second team and made his first team debut in August.

He made a trio of Championship appearances last September, but was a first-choice starter in early April, scoring 118 in the opening round defeat here against Leicestershire.

Bean watched from the non-striker’s end as three senior partners left for lunch, including Lyth and captain Shan Masood within four balls to Taylor as the score fell to 33 for 2 in the sixth over. Lyth moved into second slip and attempted to leave alone before Masood was trapped for a three-ball duck.

Bean shared 57 with another southpaw, Dawid Malan, who looked good for 28 before getting caught behind the lower leg trying to pull Ben Charlesworth’s seam – 90 for 3 in the 17th.

But Gloucestershire’s good early work was eroded owing to their inability to confine the fours, especially to the short boundary to the East Stand side of this ground.

Hill, 22, is more advanced in his development than Bean – a right-hander who is particularly strong against spin. Hill is frustrated with his inability to build on starts over the past few seasons. But he did it here. This was his best of four times over 50 in the Championship this season.

Bean reached his century by mid-afternoon with 140 balls. But he only got 13 more deliveries to go and was caught pulling deep with square legs at Zaman Akhter – 243 for 4 in the 53rd left.

After tea, Hill entered the 1990s and took Yorkshire past 300 by helping Tattersall take 19 from the 72nd against Gohar, including a slog-swept six over midwicket.

He reached his century with 177 balls before falling behind on Ollie Price’s offspin. And when Taylor, now bowling the new ball, had caught Tattersall at second slip, Yorkshire was 368 for 6 after 86 overs.

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