Two late wickets kept Warwickshire's noses just ahead in an intriguing LV= County Championship Division One match against Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge.
It was the visitors who made all the running for much of the first two days - yet shortly before stumps on the second, they were suddenly the hunted species.
Only the dismissals of Michael Lumb and then Phil Jaques, after their stand of 92, made Warwickshire marginal favourites again as the hosts reached 126 for three in pursuit of 300 to win.
Nottinghamshire conceded a 147-run deficit when they were out for 116 on a surface that has displayed variable and bounce and seam movement.
But Warwickshire could augment their advantage with only 152 all out - and then after Steven Mullaney was caught in the slips off Keith Barker, Jaques and Lumb kept all results possible in a topsy-turvy match set to finish inside three days.
There were some false shots but plenty of convincing ones too in Jaques' 80-ball half-century. But Jeetan Patel had Lumb, on 40, lbw as the shadows lengthened, and Jaques was caught-behind for 64 when Chris Wright angled one across him.
The end of Nottinghamshire's first innings provided another set of mixed messages about the feasibility of batting on this pitch.
Captain Chris Read and Samit Patel's counter-attack more than doubled the total from Sunday night's hapless 43 for six.
From Read, it featured three off-side boundaries in one Barker over and a square-cut six into the stand over the short Bridgford Road boundary off Wright.
The 50 stand was up in 10 overs, and Patel, with 54, reached his own half-century in 89 balls as the hosts moved past the follow-on mark.
Then, however, they could add only one more run for their last four wickets.
Patel's attempt to flick Oliver Hannon-Dalby to leg off the back foot resulted in a spiralling catch out into the off-side, Ian Bell running from the slips out to point to hold it.
Chris Woakes, who claimed 3-13, took the last three wickets in the same over, starting with a good delivery to have Read edging behind.
A meeting of the ECB pitch panel will take place @TrentBridge tomorrow evening following a preliminary assessment a few minutes ago
— Nottinghamshire CCC (@TrentBridge) April 28, 2014
Read and Patel were the only batsmen to reach double-figures - and it did not take the clatter of wickets long to take hold when Warwickshire tried again.
Varun Chopra edged a drive behind in the first over from Peter Siddle, but was the only departure before lunch.
Siddle soon had a second victim nonetheless, Laurie Evans cutting straight to a juggling gully - the first of four wickets for 11 runs.
Gurney took two in as many deliveries, with the final ball of his fifth over and first of his sixth.
Bell could add only five to his first-innings hundred, pushing forward and edging more lavish movement to be well-caught low down by Read.
Ateeq Javid bagged a pair, and in between Siddle had opener Will Porterfield edging to third slip.
Tim Ambrose ensured the collapse was not entirely terminal before going lbw on the back-foot defensive to Luke Fletcher, and a stand of 32 between the last pair appeared to give Warwickshire breathing space.
Jaques and Lumb had other ideas, however.