DURHAM'S Mr Dependable, skipper Jon Lewis, batted all day at Headingley yesterday to break a county record.

When he reached 118 in the penultimate over, cutting Steve Kirby for his 13th four, he passed John Morris's leading total of 5,670 first-class runs for Durham.

The captain remained unbeaten on 120 out of 267 for seven after finally finding some middle order support in the shape of young Wearsiders Ian Pattison and Phil Mustard.

Lewis converted his seventh half-century in nine championship innings into his first century since the last match of 2001 as Durham recovered from 51 for four against testing Yorkshire bowling.

"It was a hard day's work," he said. "They bowled extremely well before lunch with four seamers attacking in short spells, but once you get yourself in it gets easier.

"I'm in the best run of form of my career, but there's no particular reason for it. I changed a couple of things technically during the winter and had a couple of months off.

"It's about taking your opportunities. I was dropped in the slips whereas the other catches stuck. One of the advantages of being the wrong side of 30 is you have seen a few ups and downs. The younger lads can lose a bit of self-belief, but they have talent and they must give themselves the best chance to succeed by working hard."

Pattison, who has just turned 21, totalled 61 runs in six championship innings last season, but suddenly looked the part yesterday in contributing 62 to a vital fifth wicket stand of 132.

Then the fearless Mustard went in and showed a healthy disregard for the reputation of Darren Gough as he drove him for two off-side fours in his 23.

Pattison went in with Yorkshire so much on top that Durham were in danger of being dismissed for under 100 after choosing to bat in sunny conditions.

On the day it was announced Matthew Hoggard would be out for six weeks with a knee ligament injury, Gough, Kirby, Chris Silverwood and debutant Pieter Swanepoel all bowled well.

Michael Gough, Gordon Muchall and Nicky Peng fell to good balls, with Gary Pratt the one exception in the top order as he tried to withdraw his bat only to edge a Swanepoel delivery to give Richard Blakey one of his four catches.

The 6ft 2in Swanepoel occasionally extracted steep bounce with his brisk medium pace and commanded great respect in taking one for four in his first seven-over spell.

He almost bowled Lewis off an inside edge on 22 and the next ball cut back to beat the inside edge and fly over the stumps.

This sticky spell for Lewis continued when he edged the first ball of Silverwood's second spell just short of Yuvraj Singh at first slip, but the only clear chance he gave was on 66.

This time Singh missed the chance at waist height just to his left off Swanepoel.

Lewis remained totally unruffled as he set out his stall to bat all day. Last season he was going too far back and across his stumps at delivery and has worked hard at rectifying this so he can get forward.

As in all but one championship innings this season - when Michael Gough made 73 against Gloucestershire - Lewis found himself having to concentrate on preventing complete collapse.

When he got a thickish edge in off-spinner Richard Dawson's third over, the 32nd, it produced the first four for 17 overs as he dug in with Pattison.

In Dawson's next over, the last before lunch, Pattison twice clipped him off his toes behind square leg for four and the youngster proceeded to frustrate Darren Gough after the interval.

Looking very fit, the England paceman had his namesake caught behind for ten - with Michael earning credit for walking without being given out - and in his second spell he had Peng taken at second slip for two.

But there were no more successes for Gough, although he gave Pattison a few verbals and at one point sank to his knees in frustration when missing his off stump by a gnat's whisker.

Lewis nudged profitably off his legs all day, but it was his trademark cut for his seventh four off Silverwood which took him to 50 off 129 balls.

A similar shot by Pattison for his eighth four took him to his 94-ball half-century and when Yorkshire turned in desperation to the medium pace of Michael Lumb Pattison immediately clipped him to the mid-wicket boundary.

But another medium pacer, Gary Fellows, pinned Pattison lbw in the over before tea and on the resumption Mustard got off the mark by smashing the same bowler to the cover boundary.

He cracked Silverwood square for four, took two boundaries off Gough and was promising great things when he tried to cut Dawson and edged to Blakey.

The aggressive Kirby, who might have earned a ticking-off for his disbelief when appeals were rejected, finally had a success in the second over with the new ball as Liam Plunkett fell lbw for four.

But Silverwood was the unluckiest bowler as he went wicketless on a day when he could have had several.

He beat Nicky Phillips three times in one over just before the close and was then driven through extra cover for four.

Then to cap a a frustrating day for Yorkshire, Phillips survived a sharp chance to second slip off the final ball, but Durham were due some luck if only to reward their courageous captain.