Lancashire enjoy upturn in fortunes
Lancashire's bowlers fired after tea on day two against Middlesex to put their side in the driving seat as they chased a first LV= County Championship win of the season at Aigburth.
Defending a healthy first-innings total of 392, Kyle Hogg, Glen Chapple, Ajmal Shahzad and Simon Kerrigan all struck to reduce the visitors to 95 for five inside 29 overs on a slow pitch.
Shahzad, playing his first championship home match since signing on loan from Yorkshire earlier this month, removed Joe Denly and Eoin Morgan in a fiery six-over burst at the start of the evening session.
Middlesex were at least boosted during the last hour of the day by an unbroken 60-run stand between Neil Dexter and wicketkeeper John Simpson as they closed on 155 for five from 47 overs.
Dexter will begin day three on 33 and Simpson 28 with the visitors still 237 behind.
Lancashire also endured problems with the bat in losing their last six wickets for 71 runs after being 321 for four. Tim Murtagh and Ollie Rayner finished with three wickets apiece.
South African Ashwell Prince top-scored with 144, sharing a fifth-wicket stand of 90 with Luke Procter, but his departure sparked the collapse as Middlesex enjoyed their best spell of the match.
Lancashire's innings faded after Prince edged Gareth Berg to first slip where Rayner completed a fine one-handed catch.
Procter chipped Rayner's off-spin to Denly at midwicket for 39 and Shahzad was caught at short-leg by Sam Robson off the same bowler, leaving the score at 337 for seven.
Gareth Cross and Chapple took their side within sight of 400 but Chapple top-edged Murtagh to Berg at mid-on.
Hogg was run out shortly afterwards by Corey Collymore's throw from the leg-side boundary and Cross fell to Rayner for 41 to wrap up the Lancashire innings in the 143rd over.
Hogg then struck with his second ball of the Middlesex reply when he had opposing captain Rogers caught behind by a tumbling Cross.
Robson was trapped lbw, for 19, by one that kept low from Chapple, before Denly drove Shahzad to Karl Brown to depart for 32. That brought Morgan to the crease for his first championship innings since July 2010.
The left-hander got off the mark by sweeping his first ball off Kerrigan - his fourth in all - over midwicket for six but was bowled by Shahzad having added only two more to his total.
When Malan was caught at short-leg by Steven Croft off Kerrigan, the visitors were five down and as many runs short of three figures, although Dexter and Simpson at least survived the remainder of the day.