Gloucestershire eye first win

Lv County Championship

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Watch highlights from Grace Road where Gloucestershire closed on their first success of the campaign

Gloucestershire look on course for their first win of the season at the end of the third day of the LV= County Championship game against Leicestershire at Grace Road.

They bowled out the hosts for 217 in their second innings to leave a victory target of 188, and had reached 16 without loss by the close.

Will Gidman took 4-39 and Benny Howell 3-39 as Leicestershire limped along at just over two runs an over throughout the day.

Ned Eckersley top-scored with 45 with the home side completely shackled by the naggingly accurate Gloucestershire attack on a slow-paced pitch.

The result was that Leicestershire added only 185 runs in 87 overs to their overnight 32 for two, falling well short of the sort of target they hoped to set the visitors.

It did not take Gidman long to make the first breakthrough of the day when he had nightwatchman Ollie Freckingham lbw in his second over of the morning.

That brought in Ramnaresh Sarwan, and he survived a sharp chance to wicketkeeper Cameron Herring off Howell when he had made nine. But Eckersley, having added 25 to his overnight 20, was not so fortunate against the same bowler, beaten by a swinging delivery that clipped the off stump.

It was becoming an uphill battle for Leicestershire, but Sarwan and Josh Cobb buckled down to share a stand of 76 for the fifth wicket. Cobb occasionally chanced his arm and, having just cleared mid-off with one shot, followed it up by taking successive boundaries off Craig Miles to raise the half-century partnership.

But just when it seemed Leicestershire had steered their way out of trouble, they hit the buffers again, with three wickets falling for 12 runs in seven overs.

Cobb was the first of them, caught low down at midwicket off Howell for 43 and Sarwan followed in the seamer's next over. The Leicestershire captain was bowled off an inside edge after scoring 44.

Shiv Thakor was bowled round his legs by Jack Taylor before Matthew Boyce and Jigar Naik shared a stand of 50 to take Leicestershire past the 200 mark.

But the second new ball brought a quick end to the innings as Gidman and Miles put the finishing touches to an impressive Gloucestershire bowling performance, allowing Chris Dent and Michael Klinger to begin the visitors’ run-chase.

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