Classy Jennings double-ton sets up mammoth opening day for Durham

Keaton Jennings hit an unbeaten double hundred on the opening day against Surrey as they finished 393-9 on day one.

Classy Jennings double-ton sets up mammoth opening day for Durham
Jennings double ton increased his chances of an England call-up. (Photo: GettyImages)

Keaton Jennings' second double hundred of the season meant Durham racked up almost 400 runs on the opening day of their County Championship fixture against Surrey at The Riverside.

Jennings strengthened his England credentials with an unbeaten 200 from just 283 balls, whilst the next highest score for the hosts was just 38.

Stoneman's struggles continue

Jennings opened the batting alongside Mark Stoneman, who will join Surrey at the end of the season, but his struggles continued when he made just 20, meaning he has hit just two half-centuries in his last 18 first class innings.

He edged behind off Stuart Meaker, bringing Scott Borthwick to the crease. Durham were to announce just after lunch that Borthwick had rejected a new three-year deal and will leave the north-east club at the end of the season.

That was after he had been trapped in front by Tom Curran after making 38 in a partnership of 70 with Jennings in just 18 overs.

Durham were still in a strong position at 105-2 and Jennings passed fifty less than ten minutes after lunch, but he was far from done there.

Keaton Jennings celebrates one of his milestones (image source: Alison Sutherland, Durham Cricket)
Keaton Jennings celebrates one of his milestones (image source: Alison Sutherland, Durham Cricket)

Jack Burnham became the next man out when Meaker struck for the second time, Burnham departing for just 15 which brought England's Ben Stokes to the crease.

Stokes goes on the attack 

Stokes was joined by Mark Wood in the Durham line-up after being cleared to play following England duty and the powerful left-hander went about his business in typical fashion.

Stokes' first four scoring shots all went to the rope and he was looking good until Mark Footitt rearranged Stokes’ woodwork to see him walk back for a 22-ball 24, all scored in boundaries.

Meaker may have taken two wickets but Durham were scoring freely off the seamer as Paul Collingwood uppercut him for four and a pair of Jennings boundaries took him to 71.

Collingwood had scored just 13 of a 48-run partnership when Jennings moved onto 92 and the former England all-rounder became another Durham batsman to get in and then out again when the the 40-year-old guided a wide ball from Footitt straight into the welcoming hands of Dominic Sibley.

England hopeful Jennings moved to his seventh Championship century with a reverse sweep, becoming the first ever Durham batsman to reach seven centuries in a season.

Footitt fights back for Surrey

Durham were well on the front foot at 218-5 at a shade under four an over, but Footitt struck twice more in 25 minutes when Graham Clark and Stuart Poynter both went without scoring.

The hosts resumed 234-7 after tea but Brydon Carse was not going to follow in the footsteps of Clark and Poynter as he hit a solid 32 before Curran found the outside edge. He was gone after a 79-run stand with Jennings after he’d passed 150 and Wood picked up the baton.

Wood wasn’t hanging about as he smashed six fours in 22 balls until Meaker spoiled the party once again, seeing the England man caught for 28 to leave Durham 311-8 with 13 overs left in the day.

Graham Onions arrived to play the supporting role to Jennings, who went through to his second double hundred of the season with a boundary from the final ball of the day, finishing 200 not out from 283 balls with 31 fours.

Footitt finished with 4-88 for Surrey and Meaker 3-104 as the home side closed on 393-9, Surrey will look to wrap up the innings early on day two, but Jennings is far from finished just yet.