IN a transformation nearing West Indian proportions, Derbyshire left Durham with work to do on the final day to complete the third victory in their last five Specsavers County Championship games.

After their dismal effort in being dismissed for 164 in two sessions on Tuesday, the visitors showed far greater resolve in reaching 305 for six after following on 316 behind at Emirates Riverside.

Under clearer skies, conditions were much better for batting and without the pace of Paul Coughlin Durham lacked a cutting edge on the placid pitch. Six bowlers took a wicket each.

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They resorted at one stage to asking 18-year-old Matthew Potts to bowl short and although he struck century-maker Luis Reece on the helmet he has been unable to match the huge promise of his first four appearances.

He did, however, take his first wicket of the match six overs from the close when he swung one in to have Alex Hughes lbw for 39.

“I was pleased he got that,” said coach Jon Lewis. “He hasn't quite had his best rhythm in this match, but he's quite a feisty lad and he was trying to work out some of his frustration with the short balls. It was worth a try.

“Derbyshire worked hard, as we knew they would after yesterday, when we had decent bowling conditions. It was tougher today – the new ball still offers a bit but they got through that the first time.

“We missed Paul Coughlin's pace. He has a side strain - it's not a bad one but it will be touch and go whether he plays again this season. Mark Wood bowled five overs for the second team today and could be ready to return for us next week.”

Coughlin's absence left a burden on the shoulders of Graham Onions and Chris Rushworth. They would have hoped for more reward when they had 16 overs to bowl with the second new ball, but in pleasant evening sunshine it remained hard work.

Reece, the former Lancashire left-hander, batted until the 73rd over to make 106. There was a period when he began to play with almost casual elegance, often stroking the ball straight to fielders. But any hint of lack of application proved misleading as he accumulated patiently to reach his century off 215 balls.

He got there by pulling Potts behind square for his 12th four, having been struck on the helmet when trying the same shot on 69.

Durham might have been encouraged when two balls from Onions shot along the deck in early afternoon, but there was no repeat on the placid surface.

Reece finally pulled Keaton Jennings straight to mid-wicket and there was a wicket for another occasional bowler when Cameron Steel's leg-spin accounted for Wayne Madsen with his third ball.

Madsen contributed 48 to a third-wicket stand of 106 before being caught behind by Michael Richardson when attempting to sweep.

Good running was a feature of an opening stand of 99, in which Ben Slater made an attractive 57, his first half-century of the season.

He was yorked by a ball from off-spinner Ryan Pringle, which drifted in to hit the off stump.

Then for the second successive day Derbyshire lost a wicket two balls before lunch as Billy Godleman shuffled across and inside edged Rushworth via his box on to the leg stump.

Onions' only success came in the sixth over with the new ball when Matt Critchley played back to a ball which moved in sharply to have him lbw.

Mark Wood took none for ten in five overs as Durham seconds were well beaten by Scotland A in a 50-over match at Burnopfield yesterday. All out for 130, they lost by 128 runs.