Chapple to the fore but draw looks likely

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Glen Chapple picked up two wickets to put Lancashire in the driving seat in their LV= County Championship Division One clash against Somerset but rain prevented them from furthering their charge at Taunton.

Lancashire collected maximum batting points after adding five runs to their overnight 395 for nine before South Africa international Vernon Philander claimed his fifth wicket of the innings by removing last man Simon Kerrigan.

Chapple then reduced Somerset to 28 for two after removing openers Arul Suppiah and Lewis Gregory and although the in-form Nick Compton and James Hildreth added 53 for the third wicket, the latter was trapped in front by Luke Procter for 30.

Compton moved onto 30 not out and Craig Kieswetter will resume on four as Somerset closed on 87 for three - still 313 runs adrift of Lancashire’s first-innings total - and although a Red Rose victory seems all but impossible, the hosts must guard against complacency.

Glen Chapple

Glen Chapple took two wickets but Lancashire were denied the chance to restrict Somerset to a low score by the inclement weather at Taunton

Morning rain prevented play getting underway until 1.10pm and after Kyle Hogg took a single off Philander to move Lancashire to 400, the seamer then accounted for Kerrigan, caught at gully by Suppiah, to give Somerset maximum bowling bonus points.

Philander ended the innings with 5-71, his second five-wicket haul in three championship games.

At the start of their reply Somerset openers Arul Suppiah and Lewis Gregory found runs hard to come by against the accurate Lancashire opening attack of Chapple and Hogg.

Gregory had moved onto 15 when he edged the first ball of the 11th over of the innings, bowled by Chapple, to Paul Horton at first slip.

And the veteran seamer struck again in the 17th over when he bowled Suppiah, who was looking to drive.

Hildreth joined Compton at the wicket and opened his account with a crisply driven cover drive off Saj Mahmood.

The third-wicket pair started cautiously but after playing themselves in, Hildreth brought up his side’s 50 with two off Mahmood to midwicket in the 24th over.

However, with the total on 81, Hildreth was leg before wicket to Luke Procter, looking to turn the ball to leg.

Two overs after the tea interval the rain started to fall again and the players left the field with the score on 87 for three, after which they did not return.

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