Pujara off the mark as Yorkshire trumps Essex

The Indian batsman played a knock of 41 to help his team pull off a victory despite a disastrous outing in the first innings.

Cheteshwar Pujara, who failed in the first innings, scoring just nine, managed to score 41 in the second innings for Yorkshire against Essex at the County Championship on Sunday. (File Photo)   -  AP

India's Test stalwart Cheteshwar Pujara, after a forgettable first innings, played his part as Yorkshire overcame the opening day horror show, defeating Essex by 91 runs in a Division One County Championship tie at the County Ground in Chelmsford.

The Indian batsman played a knock of 41 to help his team pull off a victory. Yorkshire, which famously had welcomed Sachin Tendulkar as its first overseas signing in 1992, managed only 50 runs in the first innings after deciding to bat first. The team lost its first wicket without a run on board and half of the side was back in the pavilion by the eighth over. Pujara's 11-ball short stay accounted for nine runs, while skipper Garry Ballance top scored with 22. The only batsman to reach double figures.

Samuel Cook picked up five wickets for 28, while Australian Peter Siddle claimed four wickets for just seven runs.

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Essex, too, faltered, and was struggling at 12 for three, before Daniel Lawrence and Ravi Bopara calmed things down, taking the side past Yorkshire's total. Lawrence (48), the top scorer, departed with the score at 72, and Simon Harper's 60-ball 36 helped Essex to register a 92-run first innings lead.

For Yorkshire, Ben Coad, Jack Brooks and Tim Bresnan picked three wickets each.

Under pressure following the first innings debacle, Yorkshire managed to hold its nerves as openers Adam Lyth and Jonny Bairstow added 77 runs, before Bairstow was dismissed for 50. 19 runs later, his partner followed suit.

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Pujara, alongside Harry Brook, constructed a 94-run third wicket stand, pulling Yorkshire back in the contest. The Indian's 41-run knock was studded with six boundaries. Brook then stitched an 86-run partnership with England skipper Joe Root, who fell for 35.

Brook carried on, before falling for 124, with his team looking comfortable at 288 for five. Yorkshire soon folded for 329, setting a target of 237.

Essex, again, was off to a slow start, losing its opening wicket with 34 runs on board. The side was unable to stitch any long partnerships and surrendered meekly as it was bowled out for 146, with a day to spare.

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Skipper ten Doeschate managed 34, while Daniel Lawrence scored 32.

For the visitor, Steven Patterson dismantled the opposition batting with a splendid spell of six for 40.

The win took Yorkshire to the top of the eight-team Division One table. Pujara, who had managed just 33 runs in his first four innings of the summer, will look to gain confidence from his second innings knock and strike big in the upcoming games.

Yorkshire next take on Surrey on May 11.

Brief scores

Yorkshire 50 (Gary Ballance 22; Samuel Cook 5 for 28, Peter Siddle 4 for 7) & 329 (Jonny Bairstow 50, Harry Brook 124; Peter Siddle 4 for 65) beats Essex 142 (Daniel Lawrence 48; Tim Bresnan 3 for 26, Ben Coad 3 for 27) & 146 (Ryan ten Doeschate 34; Steven Patterson 6 for 40) by 91 runs.

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