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Cricket: Ton-up Browne leads Essex at Cambridge

PUBLISHED: 20:30 07 April 2018

Nick Browne of Essex hits four runs as John Bowers looks on from behind the stumps (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Nick Browne of Essex hits four runs as John Bowers looks on from behind the stumps (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

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Nick Browne wasted little time in recording his first century of the new domestic season at Fenner’s.

A general view of play at Fenner's (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)A general view of play at Fenner's (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

The left-handed Essex opener hit a six and 17 fours off the Cambridge University attack in a 122-ball innings, before retiring out.

And the defending county champions saw some of their other batsmen spend time in the middle after a delayed start to reach 283-4.

Young bowler Jack Plom was given his first-class debut by new head coach Anthony McGrath, but will have to wait for his first chance to impress with the ball after captain Ryan ten Doeschate won the toss and chose to bat.

Play was delayed until 1.55pm due to a wet outfield, but Browne and Adam Wheater put on 122 for the first wicket in 24 overs, before Wheater was caught at deep mid-wicket for exactly 50 after hitting a six and eight fours from 69 deliveries.

James Foster in footballing action before a delayed start at Fenner's (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)James Foster in footballing action before a delayed start at Fenner's (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

The 27-year-old Browne went on to reach three figures on the stroke of tea, before retiring out during the interval to allow Tom Westley to put on 58 with Dan Lawrence in 15 overs after the restart.

Westley fell six runs short of a half-century, having struck six fours, as he gave a return catch t Luke Chapman and Lawrence followed for 37 to another caught and bowled dismissal, after hitting a six and four boundaries.

That left Ravi Bopara (25 not out) and ten Doeschate to take the score along to 283-4 in the 67th over, when bad light forced an early end to the first day’s play, seven minutes before the scheduled close.

Play on Sunday is set to start at 11am.

Adam Wheater of Essex hits four runs as John Bowers looks on from behind the stumps (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)Adam Wheater of Essex hits four runs as John Bowers looks on from behind the stumps (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

*Essex have been forced to cancel their opening second XI fixtures of the new season due to a waterlogged outfield at Billericay.

The county were due to host Norfolk on Saturday and the MCC Young Cricketers on Tuesday, but both have fallen victim to the conditions and will not be rearranged.

Tom Westley hits four runs for Essex against Cambridge University (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)Tom Westley hits four runs for Essex against Cambridge University (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Nick Browne of Essex celebrates scoring a century at Fenner's (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)Nick Browne of Essex celebrates scoring a century at Fenner's (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

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