WORCESTERSHIRE paceman Charlie Morris continued his renaissance on a see-saw opening day at Blackfinch New Road.

Morris followed up his career-best 7-45 against Leicestershire in the Specsavers County Championship Division Two opener with 6-53 as Durham were bowled out for 273 in 92 overs.

But the home attack were held up for a lengthy period by Jack Burnham who missed the entire 2018 campaign through suspension after testing positive for cocaine in a third failed drugs test.

The 22-year-old former England under 19 player, who had previously made an unspectacular return to action this summer, top-scored with a resolute 76 to help rescue Durham from 14-3.

Burnham shared in a century stand with Durham captain Cameron Bancroft who registered his first 50 in the Championship for his adopted county after his own nine-month ban for ball-tampering while on international duty with Australia.

Bancroft’s Worcestershire counterpart Joe Leach also had reason to be satisfied with his day’s work in his first senior appearance for 11 months after a stress fracture of the back and he showed no ill-effects in finishing with 3-57 from 19 overs.

Leach and Morris inflicted the early damage after Durham had elected to bat.

Alex Lees (0) dragged a drive aimed at Morris onto his stumps.

Then Leach had Cameron Steel (5) caught at first slip by Rikki Wessels low to his right and trapped Gareth Harte (1) lbw trying to work the ball to leg.

Bancroft and Burnham were initially circumspect as they dug in to repair the early damage.

The former was particularly watchful before lunch when he scored only 22 off 87 balls.

But Bancroft gradually accelerated, lofting spinner George Rhodes for a straight six, as he and Burnham reached their half-centuries off 126 and 109 balls respectively.

The pair had added 149 in 46 overs but their departures and the loss of three wickets for 14 runs in the space of six overs swung the momentum back the way of Worcestershire who gave a first-class debut to Josh Dell.

Bancroft (70) tried to work Josh Tongue on the leg side and was lbw after hitting five fours and one six in his 164-ball knock.

In the next over Burnham (76) nicked Morris through to wicketkeeper Ben Cox after facing 140 deliveries and striking 12 boundaries.

Then Leach returned to the attack and enjoyed a third success when he bowled Liam Trevaskis (5).

Late-order resistance came from Ben Raine (42) and Ned Eckersley (22) who added 60 for the eighth wicket before the second new ball brought its rewards for Morris.

Raine, Matt Salisbury (8) and Matthew Potts (20) were all pouched by Daryl Mitchell at second slip and Eckersley edged to Cox.

Chris Rushworth struck an early blow for Durham as Mitchell went lbw for a second-ball duck as the hosts closed on 1-1 from two overs.