Trott finds his timing second time around but his Lions are forced to settle for draw

Yorkshire's Adil Rashid took two wickets for England Lions against Gauteng on Wednesday. Picture: Simon Hulme
Yorkshire's Adil Rashid took two wickets for England Lions against Gauteng on Wednesday. Picture: Simon Hulme
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Captain Jonathan Trott struck an unbeaten half-century as England Lions had to settle for a draw against a Gauteng Invitation XI to start their tour of South Africa.

Trott (79 not out) missed out in the Lions’ first-innings 443 all out but, in just his second time in England colours since the stress-related issues which afflicted him in the 2013 Ashes tour, he made no mistake.

He and debutant Sam Billings (53) were to the fore in a century stand as the tourists augmented their lead early, before an afternoon declaration on 176-5.

Trott left his bowlers a scheduled 56 overs to see off their inexperienced hosts, and the Lions were on track until an approaching electrical storm brought a tactical retreat and early close after Gauteng had stumbled to 120-8 in 42.

Set a purely notional 441 to win, the hosts were soon in trouble again against the Lions’ five-strong seam attack.

Jonny Bairstow’s athleticism behind the stumps gave his Yorkshire team-mate Jack Brooks (1-16) the first success, a catch down the leg-side accounting for Yassar Cook.

Yorkshire pair Liam Plunkett (1-22) and Adil Rashid (2-14) also got in on the act, while their county colleague Alex Lees – who scored 85 in the Lions’ first innings – made a one-handed catch at mid-wicket off Adam Riley before the weather intervened to save the hosts.