Glamorgan have ended the second day of their Specsavers County Championship Division Two match at St. Helen’s in Swansea on 225-6, a first innings deficit of 117 runs.
Due to a combination of rain and bad light – in stark contrast to the first day - no play was possible before lunch. However, when play got underway just before 2.30pm, Glamorgan’s openers Jacques Rudolph and Nick Selman came out showing a real attacking intent, reaching 23-0 inside the third over.
Things quickly changed, however, when Selman played a loose shot to Cameron Steel at point off Chris Rushworth’s bowling and the home side found themselves 28-1. The Australian-born youngster was unable to rediscover the form which led to his first first-class century at St. Helen’s last year, when he carried his bat on his way to 122 against Northamptonshire, the first Glamorgan batsman to do so since Matthew Elliott at Cardiff in 2004.
A second wicket soon followed, Rudolph finding Paul Collingwood in the slips, Glamorgan finding themselves 39-2. Colin Ingram joined Will Bragg at the crease needing just 39 to reach 1,000 runs across all formats this season. The South African fell 21 runs short of the milestone, giving Collingwood a second catch at slip off Coughlin for 18 as Glamorgan lost their third wicket at 76.
More composure was evident with Aneurin Donald and Bragg at the crease, before the latter needlessly skied one to Rushworth at mid-on off James Weighell’s bowling and Glamorgan were once again struggling at 92-4. New batsman David Lloyd could have gone third ball, but a simple chance went begging for Ryan Pringle at slip.
Having restricted Glamorgan to 112-4 at tea, it took just 10 balls into the final session for Durham to pick up their fifth wicket, as David Lloyd was removed by Paul Collingwood at slip off Paul Coughlin for 16. Aneurin Donald had reached his half-century off 74 balls before a one-handed mid-wicket catch by Keaton Jennings off James Weighell brought an end to a 42 run partnership which had offered some middle-order as Glamorgan reached 167-6.
Andrew Salter joined Chris Cooke at the crease and an unbeaten partnership of 58 saw Glamorgan through to the close of play after the latter had reached his half-century off 83 balls, having hit eight fours along the way.
Glamorgan's Chris Cooke said: "I think we probably had the worst of the conditions over the two days. It was overcast with moisture in the air. I think the ball did a bit with us. The pitch is alright, it’s a bit stoppy but the outfield definitely makes up for it and there are runs out there."
I think a lead is quite far away in the future but everyone bats in our team and hopefully if Salts (Andrew Salterand) I can get through the first half an hour, it should be a bit easier when the ball is 50-60 overs old. So we’ll take it step by step and edge up to their score.
Durham's Chris Rushworth said: "It’s been hard but in fairness when we got back on, conditions were in our favour. It just didn’t go as well as we’d planned. It’s nice to come off the field with six wickets but the plan was to stop the run rate, which didn’t go to plan. We had a plan of trying to keep it tight but a bit of luck went their way and a few bad balls went against us. We’ve just got to come back tomorrow and try and do the right things and hopefully pick up a few quick wickets."