Essex batsman Lawrence, 17, hits maiden ton and re-writes history

 
Ross McLean
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Essex No3 batsman Dan Lawrence scored 161 against Surrey at the Kia Oval yesterday
TRAIL-BLAZING teenager Dan Lawrence became the youngest Essex batsman to score a championship century when he reached his maiden hundred on day three of his side’s clash with Surrey at the Kia Oval yesterday.

Lawrence, aged 17 years and 290 days, was playing just his second first-class fixture and brought up the three-figure milestone by driving all-rounder Zafar Ansari to the cover boundary, having faced 146 deliveries.

It is thought that only two younger players have ever scored a championship ton: Kent’s Godfrey Bryan in 1920 aged 17 years and 245 days and Dipak Patel of Worcestershire in 1976 at the age of 17 years and 270 days.

Lawrence was eventually caught behind by Surrey wicketkeeper Gary Wilson off left-arm spinner Ansari for 161, a knock which included 17 fours and two sixes.

Essex declared on 610-8 in reply to Surrey’s 340, while the hosts will resume their second innings today on 95-2, with Rory Burns and exiled England batsman Kevin Pietersen at the crease.