Troughton shines for champions
Jim Troughton held up resurgent Durham as Warwickshire reached 299 for seven at Edgbaston on the first day of their second home match in defence of their Division One crown in the LV= County Championship.
With ground to make up after a rain-ruined draw against Derbyshire last week, Troughton's sure-footed passage to 84 from 173 balls was the centrepiece in the champions' response to being put in by Paul Collingwood.
Troughton, with 12 fours, picked up where he left off with two hundreds in the second half of the title-winning summer, but Durham hit back after tea as Ben Stokes claimed two wickets in 14 deliveries.
The all-rounder removed Tim Ambrose, chopping on after making 31, and then claimed the bigger prize when Troughton's innings came to a disappointing conclusion with a chip to mid-on. In a further setback, Rikki Clarke was caught at the wicket, attempting to cut occasional spinner Will Smith.
But the final session then took another twist back to Warwickshire as Chris Woakes and Keith Barker, who both missed the season opener, finished on 19 and 39 respectively having seen off the new ball in putting on an unbroken 62 in 17 overs.
In common with most captains this season, Collingwood may have expected some help from the pitch when choosing to bowl first but his pace attack - fresh from taking 20 wickets in overcoming Somerset - made limited progress in gloomy, blustery conditions.
Graham Onions was the pick of the bowlers but Scott Borthwick's sharp reactions in holding an edge from Varun Chopra at second slip were not matched when Will Porterfield was given two let-offs.
Durham did manage a second success as Chris Rushworth swung a good delivery into Ian Westwood's pads to remove the opener for 28 but, with the floodlights on throughout the first session, Porterfield battled to 27 in a stand of 62 with Troughton.
However, the left-hander - increasingly confident after a couple of fours off Rushworth - perished when a front-foot drive off the same bowler was well taken by Smith at point.
That was Rushworth's 10th wicket in an impressive start to the season, yet it did not lead to the full-scale breakthrough that Durham wanted.
With Troughton rolling along to 50 in 86 balls, he shared in another half-century stand with Laurie Evans.
This season could be a big one for the former Surrey batsman; after being given only five championship appearances in three years, he has an opportunity to cement a middle-order position.
New director of cricket Dougie Brown would have enjoyed some of his shots - seven fours came in an attractive 44 - but perhaps not the loose drive off Callum Thorp which resulted in a smart catch by Collingwood at first slip.