Runs for Lees in Lions’ tour opener

20 April 2014........     Yorkshire v Northants , LV County Championship - Division One Day 1 at Headingley.'Yorkshire batsman Alex Lees. (TJ100333n). Picture by Tony Johnson

20 April 2014........ Yorkshire v Northants , LV County Championship - Division One Day 1 at Headingley.'Yorkshire batsman Alex Lees. (TJ100333n). Picture by Tony Johnson

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Halifax batsman Alex Lees has made a promising start to his winter tour with England Lions in South Africa.

The 21-year-old left-hander made 82 not out as the tourist piled up 361 for four on the first of three days against a Gauteng Invitation XI in Soweto.

Former Bradshaw, Illingworth and Lightcliffe player Lees, who was named the Cricket Writers’ Club Young Cricketer of the Year in September, hit nine fours and two sixes.

After surviving one early chance to short-leg. he added 86 in an unbroken stand with Yorkshire clubmate Jonny Bairstow.

Lees tweeted: “Played well, was a good day.”

Lees normally opens for the white rose side but had a long wait to go in at number three with county partner Adam Lyth (106) and Sam Robson (109) putting on 176 for the first wicket.

Lyth, Robson and Lees are among those pushing to open with captain Alastair Cook against the West Indies, New Zealand and then in the Ashes next summer.