A fluent Wayne Madsen struck 144 in an imperious innings which propelled Derbyshire into a good position on Day One versus Warwickshire at Edgbaston.
After early quick wickets reduced Derbyshire to 84-4, Madsen held the visitors’ innings together in partnerships with Gary Wilson (34), Matt Critchley (30) and Duanne Olivier (40 not out) to take Derbyshire to 318 all out.
Olivier struck with the ball in the sixth over of the Warwickshire reply as the hosts closed on 32-1, trailing Derbyshire by 286 runs at the end of a highly-competitive opening day.
After Billy Godleman won the toss and elected to bat, the Derbyshire openers Ben Slater (16) and Luis Reece (20) both made starts, but ultimately failed to settle and were dismissed in the opening hour and a half.
Once Reece fell to Jeetan Patel, the first of the experienced spinner’s four wickets, Alex Hughes (4) soon followed, caught in the deep by the diving Will Rhodes.
Two overs later, Godleman was bowled by Henry Brookes for one to cement a commanding first session for the hosts.
After the interval Madsen found a partner to stick with him in Wilson. The gritty wicketkeeper-batsman hit five fours in a fifth-wicket partnership which doubled the Derbyshire score to 168-5, before Wilson was well caught by Jonathan Trott at first slip off Patel.
Opening bowler Ryan Sidebottom was forced off the field mid-over with a side strain and Madsen pushed on past a second half-century in three matches, alongside Critchley.
Derbyshire were in the ascendancy, fighting back from 84-4 as Critchley pulled over square leg for six. But once the all-rounder was lbw to Patel and Hardus Viljoen fell to the same bowler for seven, Derbyshire were back in trouble at 233-7.
A constant throughout the innings, Madsen powered on to reach a 26th first-class century for Derbyshire, bringing up the milestone with a trademark sweep to the ropes for four.
17-year-old spinner Hamidullah Qadri hung around with Madsen for 3 off 21 balls, but it was the ninth wicket partnership, between the South African pairing of Madsen and Duanne Olivier, which took the visitors past 300 to collect a third bonus batting point.
Worth 67, the stand frustrated the Warwickshire bowlers and when Derbyshire were eventually all out for 318, Patel and Brookes both picking up four wickets, it ended a strong resistance from the visitors which clawed them back into the match.
With runs on the board, the international quick pairing of Viljoen and Olivier began work with the ball and it was Olivier who got the early breakthrough, removing Dominic Sibley for six thanks to a diving catch at fourth slip from Critchley.
Nightwatchman Chris Wright joined Will Rhodes and saw out the remainder of the day as Warwickshire reached stumps on 32-1, trailing by 286 runs.
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