Yorkshire’s leading men Dawid Malan and Gary Ballance bring necessary quality to fore against Sussex

PAUL GRAYSON is hoping that Yorkshire’s dark days with the bat are behind them as he hailed the performances of the returning Dawid Malan and Gary Ballance as the perfect template for red-ball cricket.

Yorkshire's Gary Ballance hits out on his way to a half century against Sussex. Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com

Malan scored 103 and Ballance 74 as Yorkshire seized control of their County Championship match against Sussex at Emerald Headingley, the third-wicket pair adding an unbroken 177 to take their team to 272-2 at stumps on day two in reply to the visitors’ 313.

Yorkshire had the lowest number of batting points (nine) in the country going into the match and have often been forced to field an inexperienced top-order, with Malan making his first appearance of the season after his stint at the Indian Premier League and Ballance having missed three of the first seven Championship fixtures through injury.

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Their class and composure speaks for itself, and batting coach Grayson said: “When you’ve got experienced players around like Dawid and Gary, it just gives the group a bit of confidence and a bit of calmness, the way that they go about things, and the younger lads can learn off the way that they play.

IN CONTROL: Yorkshire's Dawid Malan hits out against Sussex. Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com

“They’ve got lots of experience, lots of quality, and I think that helps the other lads too.

“It does set the template, and it’s how we want to play, but sometimes you haven’t got the personnel around and it’s not easy when you’ve got younger lads coming in and out of the side.

“We were very inexperienced at Old Trafford last week, against probably the best seam attack in the country, and we’ve had some dark days this year against the red ball when we’ve been 25-4 and struggling to get batting points.

“But I can’t fault the work ethic. The players have been outstanding. We’ve just been a little bit short of confidence at times, which can happen.

“Let’s be fair, for the majority of the season, the pitches have been bowler-friendly and it’s nipped around, but hopefully now the pitches will get a bit drier and be a bit better to bat on and the lads can really cash in.”

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