Lewis hastens Gloucestershire win
Gloucestershire moved into a promotion position in the LV= County Championship with a 10-wicket victory over Middlesex inside three days at Bristol.
Jon Lewis claimed 4-45 and Gemaal Hussain 3-61 as the visitors were bowled out for 228 in their second innings, Neil Dexter top-scoring with 54.
That left Gloucestershire requiring only 45 for their fifth championship win of the season.
Kadeer Ali and Jonathan Batty knocked off the required runs in 13.1 overs and their side took 23 points from the game to Middlesex’s three.
The home side began the day on 404 for eight and lost the wickets of Steve Kirby and Anthony Ireland for the addition of just another 16, a lead of 184.
Middlesex needed a good start to get back in the game, but Lewis struck with the new ball, pinning Scott Newman lbw for five.
It was 40 for two when Sam Robson was caught behind off Lewis for 12 and wicketkeeper Jonathan Batty produced a better catch, diving to his right, to remove Owais Shah for 32 off the same bowler.
Soon Middlesex were 79 for four as Dawid Malan edged James Franklin into the slip cordon where Chris Dent took the catch. From then on it was just a case of whether the match would go into a final day.
Dexter did his best to make that happen, riding his luck with a few edges through the slips to score 11 fours in his 47-ball innings, which was ended by another Dent slip catch off Hussain.
John Simpson had helped add 60 for the fifth wicket, but with his score on 23, he fell lbw to the off-spin of Chris Taylor.
Hussain sent back Josh Davey and Tom Smith to take his wicket tally in championship cricket this season to 39 and Lewis ended the innings by bowling Toby Roland-Jones.
Gloucestershire’s policy of leaving out a specialist spinner had been vindicated as all their seamers, including the wicketless Steve Kirby, bowled well and applied pressure.
There were 17 overs left in the day when Gloucestershire began their second innings and Kadeer went straight on the attack, moving to 16 in only the third over as he and Batty confidently wrapped up victory.