Published: 19:29, 07 May 2021
| Updated: 19:30, 07 May 2021
Two late wickets on day two kept Kent in their County Championship game with Yorkshire at Headingley on Friday.
The hosts were cruising on 233-3 in reply to Kent's 305 but they closed the day on 240-5 with the new ball just overs away for the visitors.
Kent added 81 to their overnight 224-7, despite losing Nathan Gilchrist, who had his middle stump ripped out of the ground during an excellent opening spell by Jordan Thompson, early on for nine.
Miguel Cummins came to the crease and after a tentative start, he freed his arms after being hit on the helmet in Duanne Olivier's first over of the day.
Cummins adopted a hit out or get out policy and it quickly paid off as he ended up just one run short of his first-class best on 29 not out. he hit two leg-side sixes in a Steve Patterson over, the second clearing the stands on the short mid-wicket boundary.
At the other end Marcus O'Riordan was untroubled as he worked his way to 40, only to drag a cut from Olivier onto his stumps with their partnership on 60 in 13 entertaining overs.
Debutant Matt Quinn didn't last long, however, and he gave a return catch to spinner Dom Bess for one.
Having been dropped at point on one by Joe Denly off Darren Stevens before lunch, Adam Lyth clipped the same bowler over mid-wicket for six early in the afternoon.
But Stevens got his revenge when Lyth attempted to go over the top again and found mid-on for 23.
Yorkshire were 48-2 when threatening seamer Nathan Gilchrist forced struggling Tom Kohler-Cadmore to play on for 14.
Gary Ballance pulled and cut successive Cummins no balls for six and four during the second half of the afternoon, and Joe Root was busy throughout his 69-ball innings with five fours.
The pair were in total control against a Kent attack missing injured trio Harry Podmore, Matt Milnes and Grant Stewart.
It was no surprise that it took a slice of fortune for Quinn to dismiss Root for 41 on a slow pitch nine balls after tea.
Ballance reached his fifty off 89 balls while in partnership with Harry Brook for the fourth wicket, with their equally peaceful alliance amounting to 102 inside 31 overs.
Brook added his fourth half-century of 2021 off 65 balls before falling lbw to Gilchrist shortly before the close. Denly also trapped Jonny Tattersall lbw as Yorkshire fell to 236-5
Ballance is on course for his first century since July 2019 but Kent know early wickets on day three could yet give them a slender first-innings advantage.
O’Riordan said: “We’re pretty happy. The seamers bowled really consistently, and we got our rewards. Those late wickets have given us a sniff with the new ball coming up tomorrow morning. That’s a time where we can make a move. To sneak a lead would be nice.
“Matt Walker spoke to us before the game, particularly about Alan (Igglesden), saying that he’d be here today. That gave us a bit more perspective about what it means to play for Kent.”