It was a 41st birthday to remember for Durham captain Paul Collingwood, as he struck 127 off 174 balls to aid his team’s recovery on the first day of their County Championship Division Two clash against Glamorgan at St. Helen’s in Swansea.
However, it was also a day to remember for new Glamorgan captain Michael Hogan, whose three wickets in a four-ball spell saw him end his first day as skipper with a five-wicket haul, ending with 5/49. Hogan’s late inroads meant Durham finished the day 342 all out.
The visitors wobbled early on, losing two wickets in the first eight overs of the match, including that of key opening batsman Keaton Jennings, clean bowled by Marchant de Lange for four in the fifth over. Subsequently, Stephen Cook was trapped leg before wicket by Australian-born Dutchman Timm van der Gugten, leaving them 17/2.
That poor start left Durham up against it at 92-2 at lunch, having failed to capitalise on an ideal batting wicket, although Graham Clark and Cameron Steel built an 86-run partnership for the third wicket.
But Glamorgan built on their own morning success with a quick wicket after lunch, Clark falling to a superb low slip catch by Nick Selman off Hogan, the visitors having reached 103/3.
Steel brought up his fifty off 134 balls, hitting seven fours, but all eyes were on birthday boy Paul Collingwood who had raced to 30 by the time his partner had reached the milestone, hitting six fours on all sides of the wicket.
A useful 60 partnership came to an end when Selman claimed his second slip catch of the innings off Hogan, as Steel departed for 59 to leave the visitors 163/4 in the 57th over.
Just three overs later, Durham lost their fifth wicket as Ryan Pringle was caught by wicket-keeper Chris Cooke off Marchant de Lange for five, and Durham were struggling once again at 169/5.
At tea, Durham were 183/5 and the skipper reached the half-century mark just after the break off 100 balls. A sixth-wicket partnership of 91 with Paul Coughlin put the visitors back in the game as they claimed a second batting point. However, the stand came to an end when Coughlin was leg before wicket to Timm van der Gugten for 31.
Collingwood went on to reach his century off 158 balls, and had hit 17 fours on his way to 127 before he was trapped leg before wicket by Andrew Salter.
An eighth wicket soon followed, Stuart Poynter caught behind off Michael Hogan for a useful 38 as Durham reached 342/8.
Hogan claimed his second wicket in the over when he bowled George Harding off his second ball and completed a three-in-four-ball stint – and four in seven balls – when Chris Rushworth was caught behind off the last ball of the day to end Durham’s first innings on 342.
Century-maker Collingwood said: "I’m delighted to have contributed today and got that hundred. It was a disappointing end to the day. The Glamorgan boys looked pretty tired out there and I wanted to be aggressive against them and score some late runs so to have lost those late wickets was disappointing but we’ll only know what sort of score that is when we bowl on it tomorrow.
On hitting another century on his birthday (he hit one two years ago v Worcestershire): "Maybe it should be my birthday every day! My mam and dad were here today too. You always want to contribute and I did that."