Jimmy Adams admitted his relief at bouncing back from a nightmare start to the new season to play a major role in saving Hampshire’s LV County Championship clash with Durham.
The Hampshire opener struck a classy century to help his side bat out the day after being dismissed for a first-ball duck in the first innings of the new campaign.
His 105 from 248 balls included 19 fours and formed a terrific opening partnership of 171 with Liam Dawson (70).
Johann Myburgh (42) and Neil McKenzie (43) ensured that Dominic Cork’s side avoided defeat in the first clash of the season after being outplayed for the first three days of the contest.
Hampshire were on 345 for five with just six overs remaining in the day’s play when Durham skipper Phil Mustard knew that his hopes of victory were over.
Adams said: ‘It was just a case of batting a bit of time and trying to take the game away from them.
‘It was nice to come away with a draw and get some runs after a blip in the first dig.
‘There was a bit of pressure to get through that first hour on the final day. Once we had a decent start, I felt things were shifting our way.’
Adams only recently returned from a lengthy tour with the England Lions after a busy winter schedule but refused to blame it for his first innings failure.
He smiled: ‘If I hadn’t got many runs in the second dig, I would have been blaming fatigue for sure!
‘Two nights ago I was a bit gloomy but it was a good winter.
‘It’s never nice walking out to bat again after a first-baller in the first innings. You are hoping that you get a ball you can collect early on.
‘Hopefully, I’m not in that position too many times this season.’
While Hampshire looked to be heading for defeat, Adams and Dawson offered a glimmer of hope with their resistance in the final session of day three.
And they picked up where they left off to get to lunch on day four with all 10 wickets still intact.
Adams said: ‘I thought Daws played brilliantly and looked in really good touch.
‘Hopefully his form continues and he can take some confidence from this.
‘We were under the pump for three days out of four. They played most of the cricket but to come out with something is nice to take into the next game at Nottinghamshire this week.
‘It’s never great to start the season with a loss. We were disappointed with the first three days but at least we’ve come away with something from this game.
‘We under-performed for the first three days but we showed a bit of scrap to get a draw.’