Brophy finds his timing to dig Yorkshire out of hole

Worcestershire 286 Yorkshire 284-7 (Yorkshire trail by 3 runs)

Clearly there is nothing like a challenge to bring out the best in some cricketers, as Gerard Brophy would doubtless confirm after his century dragged Yorkshire out of an unexpected hole against relegation favourites Worcestershire here.

The 35-year-old South African learned in the winter his position as first-choice wicketkeeper had been handed to the rapidly progressing Jonathan Bairstow and that he would have to prove worthy of a place for his batting if he were not to spend his benefit season on the fringes of Andrew Gale's ambitious side.

Given that Bairstow scored 918 runs last season – 170 more than Brophy in his best campaign – it was evident he had his work cut out, particularly with Joe Root, another product of Yorkshire's academy, pushing for starts. As if that were not pressure enough, Brophy's contract is up at the end of this season.

His response was pretty much perfect. Yorkshire, having let Worcestershire off the hook on Friday when they advanced from 197 for 8 to 286 all out, tailender Matt Mason plundering runs, then stumbled unimpressively to 155 for 7 in reply. Mason and his partners in the "dad's army" attack – he is 37 while his Australian compatriot Damien Wright and Alan Richardson are 35 – stuck to the virtues of disciplined line and length, and one batsman after another followed the moving ball and conspired to give half a dozen catches in the arc between wicketkeeper and gully.

Root, plainly nervous on his Championship debut, could be forgiven for nudging his 12th ball into the hands of Vikram Solanki at first slip, but others were less deserving of indulgence. Bairstow was among the more careless, playing loosely at a ball from Mason to be snaffled at third slip, as was Adil Rashid, so impressive with the ball on Friday, who thick-edged to Gareth Andrew at gully as Wright claimed his third wicket on debut.

Adam Lyth, who began with some impressive shots for four through midwicket, could do little about a good ball from Wright, while the delivery that ended dogged opener Joe Sayers's first knock in almost a year had its merits too.

Gale seemed to be the man to carry the responsibility of rebuilding the innings but he too perished relatively cheaply. Instead it was Brophy who found the resolve that was needed.

Never giving more than the sniff of a chance, he surpassed the best of his two first-class centuries for Yorkshire to be 118 not out at the close, never achieving quite the style points that Lyth, for example, characteristically revealed, but hitting some agreeable shots in his 17 boundaries.

Ryan Sidebottom provided magnificent support with his first half-century in first-class cricket since 1998 as Yorkshire closed only two runs in arrears at 284 for 7.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

Something wicked?

Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
10 best sun creams for body

10 best sun creams for body

Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon files

Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games
Women's World Cup 2015: How England's semi-final success could do wonders for both sexes

There is more than a shiny trophy to be won by England’s World Cup women

The success of the decidedly non-famous females wearing the Three Lions could do wonders for a ‘man’s game’ riddled with cynicism and greed
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map