TOM Lammonby scored a ton and skipper Josh Bess should have had one too as Devon batted themselves into a strong position against Shropshire at Bridgnorth.
Lammonby, who is dual-registered with Somerset, continued his comeback after nine weeks on the injured list with a fluent 130.
Captain Bess, fresh from his double hundred against Dorset in Devon’s last three-day fixture, went all the way to 97 then got out.
The stand between Lammonby and Bess of 150 for the fourth wicket took Devon to 230 for four.
Bits and pieces before and after Lammonby and Bess got to work – 27 by Dan Pyle, 33 for Luke Bess – helped Devon reach 358 all out.
Shropshire had to bat out the final 28 overs last night and were 86 for two when stumps were drawn.
Stephen Leach was not out on 43 and Joe Carrasco just out for 43 to the last ball of the day, bowled by Devon’s debutant teenaged leg-spinner Ed Middleton.
Lammonby, who was due to skipper England U19s this summer before a fractured foot got in the way, didn’t offer a discernable chance during his 182 minutes at the crease.
“He may have played and missed a few, but after looking understandably rusty at first batted with increasing fluency,” said Keith Donohue, Devon’s director of cricket.
“The time in the middle will have done him some good – and did us some good too!
“We needed some of our top-five batters to score some runs and those two came good.”
Lammonby’s knock, which included 14 fours, ended when South African slow-left armer Warwick Fynn found the edge of his bat and fellow countryman Alexei Kerveee took a one-handed catch at slip.
Bess had already gone by then, caught trying to hit leg-spinner Sam Whitney over the top for what would have been the fifth six of his stay.
“Josh will have been kicking himself for getting out trying to launch the ball out of the ground,” said Donohue.
Devon omitted batsman Abraham Kopparambil from their 12-man party in favour of Middleton as an extra spinner on a pitch expected to turn as the game unfolds.
Devon 358 (T A Lammonby 130, J J Bess 97, L F O Bess 33; A C F Wyatt 4-65, A Quiney 3-94), Shropshire 86-2 (S G Leach 43no, J D Carrasco 43). Bonus points: Devon (4), Shropshire (4)