Seventh wicket century helps Surrey recover against Notts

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A fighting seventh wicket stand of 112 between Steven Davies and Tom Curran hauled Surrey to 299 for 8 on the opening day of their Specsavers County Championship Division One match at the Kia Oval.

Davies hit a fine 82 and Curran made 52 after they had joined forces with Surrey wobbling on 172 for 6, but both eventually fell to the second new ball as Jake Ball finished with 3 for 69.

Ball angled one through Curran’s forward defensive and Davies fell to the very next ball, the first of seamer Brett Hutton’s new over, when he chopped on to his stumps. Gareth Batty, with 11 not out, saw out the day with Stuart Meaker unbeaten on 4.

On 91 for one at one stage, after choosing to bat first on winning a toss, Surrey’s mid-innings slide began just before lunch when Kumar Sangakkara was bowled by Steven Mullaney for 29 after he had added 73 in 21 overs for the second wicket with Arun Harinath.

Harinath went on to score 73 from 144 balls before being fourth out, caught behind nibbling at Samit Patel immediately after lofting the slow left-armer over mid on for his eighth four.

Sangakkara had earlier gone past 19,000 career first-class runs as he and Harinath rallied Surrey after the early loss of Rory Burns for 4 when the opener edged fast bowler Ball to the keeper in the ninth over.

At lunch Surrey were 98 for 2 but, from the second ball after the interval, Gary Wilson top-edged a sweep at Matt Carter’s off spin to be caught at backward square leg for 2.

Zafar Ansari departed for a fourth ball duck, leg before to the persevering Harry Gurney in the next over following Harinath’s dismissal, and a promising sixth wicket alliance between Davies and Ben Foakes was cut short when Foakes, driving loosely on 22, edged the testing Ball to keeper Riki Wessels.

That was the high point of a hard-fought day, though, for Notts as Davies and Curran mixed determined defence with some fine strokeplay. Davies faced 160 balls, hitting eight fours while 21-year-old all-rounder Curran also struck eight fours in his 115-ball knock.

Surrey had opted to bat first even though the pitch looked to have a little bit more green grass on it than is usual at the Oval, and Harinath enjoyed a life on 12 when, in Ball’s fourth over, he slashed high to first slip where Dan Christian could not hold on to the fast-travelling edge above his head.

Sangakkara hit five fours in his 58-ball effort but was beaten as he played back to Mullaney after the Notts captain brought his medium pacers into the attack from the Pavilion End.