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Masterful Moeen holds up dominant Red Rose

Watch highlights of the third day's action from New Road

Only Moeen Ali stood between Lancashire and another step towards promotion in the LV= County Championship as the Division Two leaders made good progress on the third day against Worcestershire at New Road.

The England Lions left-hander became the first Worcestershire batsman to score two hundreds in a match for three years as the Pears limped to for a slender lead of 12 after Lancashire had made 441 in their first innings.

The home side were quickly in trouble with Kyle Hogg and Glen Chapple shooting out the opening pair in the first eight overs.

Moeen shrugged off the double blow and looked a class apart as he accelerated past 50 while taking 18 runs from an over by off-spinner Arron Lilley.

Although more conservative at the beginning of his second fifty, he picked up the tempo again before closing on 101 not out from 142 balls.

Thilan Samaraweera, Tom Fell and Ross Whiteley all offered support but further wickets for Tom Smith, Chapple and Lilley edged Lancashire closer to a seventh win in 12 games.

Earlier, the Red Rose secured maximum batting points for the first time in the campaign as Smith brought his injury-hit season to life with 84 from 125 balls and Luke Procter reeled off a fourth consecutive half-century.

Worcestershire's bowlers failed to maintain any level of intensity when Smith and Procter added 136 in 35 overs.

Simon Katich, having raced to a century in 86 balls on the previous afternoon, steered Jack Shantry's first delivery of the day straight to Samaraweera at gully.

With the Australian gone for 105, there was not much between the teams on the scoreboard but the game quickly ran away from Worcestershire as Smith, in particular, found his range against some wayward bowling.

The all-rounder's first fifty of the summer came up in only 75 balls and by lunch Lancashire were in the driving seat with a lead of 116.

Procter's rich run of form took him to 76 before a mis-controlled shot off his legs sparked off a quick wrap-up with the new ball, Alan Richardson and Graeme Cessford taking the last four wickets in 45 minutes after lunch.

Shantry did well to hold a low chance from Procter at wide mid-on and wicketkeeper Ben Cox picked up three catches, the best when he stretched to his right to reach Smith's leg-side deflection off Cessford, who finished with 4-73..

Richardson had to bowl 33 overs - twice as many as Cessford - for a return of 4-102 that put him on 49 championship wickets for the season.