Durham 219 for 5 (Latham 120*) trail Gloucestershire 362 (Stokes 5-52) by 143 runs
Tom Latham's battling century frustrated Gloucestershire's bid to take control of their Specsavers County Championship match with Durham on the second day at Cheltenham. The visitors' stand-in skipper hit an unbeaten 120, off 239 balls with 19 fours, remaining rock solid as his side slipped to 105 for 4 in reply to the home team's 362 all out.
Thanks largely to Latham's first ton of the season, Durham were able to close on 219 for 5, but still trailed by 143. Ben Stokes could contribute only three off 31 deliveries after completing figures of 5 for 52 from 25 impressive overs in Gloucestershire's innings.
Durham's other England bowler, Mark Wood, was still feeling the effects of a foot injury suffered on day one and was unable to bowl.
The day began with the hosts 315 for 7. Stokes claimed two of the last three wickets, but could not prevent Craig Miles and David Payne securing a fourth batting point. Miles was dropped at gully on 13 off Stokes, who went on to uproot his off stump and then have Matt Taylor caught at point off a leading edge. Matt Salisbury had last man George Drissell caught behind off an attempted pull shot to end the innings.
By lunch Durham had replied with 39 for no wicket, Latham dominating the opening stand with Cameron Steel, who fell for 13 soon after the interval with the total on 46. Looking to withdraw the bat from a Craig Miles delivery, Steel appeared to glove it through to wicketkeeper Gareth Roderick.
Will Smith could make only 8 before departing lbw to Miles in the 24th over and Graham Clark, who had survived a tough chance to slip on 9, followed for 18, leg-before looking to clip Matt Taylor through the on-side.
Latham went to his half-century off 117 balls, but the 26-year-old New Zealander was made to fight hard by some accurate Gloucestershire bowling. Stokes, too, was pinned down in uncharacteristic fashion until attempting to break loose with a drive off Kieran Noema-Barnett and edging the medium pacer to Chris Dent at second slip.
At tea Durham were 115 for 4, but Latham and Michael Richardson carefully went about repairing the damage, adding 66 for the fifth wicket before Richardson, on 21, carelessly pulled a Ryan Higgins long-hop straight to Benny Howell at midwicket. It could have been worse for the visitors as Miles Hammond spilled a straightforward catch at midwicket off Drissell to give Stuart Poynter a life before he had scored.
Latham brought up a workmanlike and disciplined hundred with a fine extra-cover drive off Miles for four and Poynton settled in to be unbeaten on 21 at the close