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Ambrose adds steel to Warwickshire win

A gritty 47 from Tim Ambrose on a turning Uxbridge pitch led to a maximum-points victory but Warwickshire were made to work hard for their five-wicket LV= County Championship win over Middlesex.

Ambrose dug in for 91 minutes and hit six fours only to succumb with Warwickshire 12 short of the winning line as the visitors overcame a case of the last-gasp jitters to secure victory, one that sees them stay sixth in Division One two places behind their opponents.

With two sessions of the match remaining in which to score the 110 required for only their second success of the campaign, Warwickshire soon realised they had a fight on their hands after losing two wickets within 21 balls.

With little option but for all-out attack, Middlesex opened with off-spinner Ollie Rayner from the Gatting Way End - a ploy that quickly reduced the visitors to five for two.

First-innings double-centurion Varun Chopra chipped Rayner's fourth delivery to short midwicket then Laurie Evans advanced to drive only to pick out Neil Dexter at mid-on without scoring.

In an attritional mid-session, Middlesex turned to spin at both ends for half an hour but it was the re-introduction of Corey Collymore that led to Ian Westwood's demise for six when he feathered to Adam Voges at third slip.

Ateeq Javid and Ambrose added a useful 33 inside 15 overs before Javid nicked a Gareth Berg leg-cutter to the keeper on 19 to leave Warwickshire on 77 for four at tea - still 33 shy of their target.

Ambrose fell just before the end, caught off inside edge and then pad at silly point when trying to flick to leg, but Rikki Clarke marched in to win it in style with a brace of boundaries.

At the start of the final day Voges continued his role as the major thorn in the Warwickshire side when the Australian again showed most resolve and offered the hosts their main chance of saving the game.

The wiry right-hander from Perth, making his first-class debut for the county, followed his first-innings 150 with a patient yet stylish 88-ball fifty. However, as with the Middlesex first innings, wickets continued to fall at the other end.

Toby Roland-Jones (17) propped forward to Jeetan Patel to proffer a bat-pad catch to Chopra at silly point then Berg (12) was caught behind off the same bowler when looking to cut one that popped off the surface.

Voges' resistance ended four balls after his half-century when, in aiming to push drive straight against Woakes, he chipped a return catch to the bowler.

Rayner (19) gave Patel a third scalp when he aimed to sweep only to balloon a bat-pad catch to Clarke running back from slip toward fine-leg.

The last-wicket pair at least made Warwickshire play extra time but, 10 minutes after the scheduled start to the lunch break, Ravi Patel (19) nicked an attempted drive through to the keeper as Middlesex were dismissed for 286.

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