LV=CC, May 18: As it happened
6:40pm - Of the four games that went into a fourth day, only the match at Wantage Road ended in a draw. Even Kent’s clash with Worcestershire was wrapped up this afternoon, and it was only the second day at Canterbury!
Worcestershire, thanks to Alan Richardson, were the victors there and Sussex, Nottinghamshire and Essex will also be celebrating this evening.
An enthralling day ends with the following scores:
Glamorgan (231 & 338) lost to Essex (345 & 275/5) by five wickets at the SWALEC Stadium.
Northamptonshire (335 and 215/8 dec) drew with Leicestershire (234 & 168/3) at Wantage Road.
Kent (159 and 63) lost to Worcestershire (194 & 31/0) by 10 wickets at Canterbury.
6:32pm - RESULT! Glamorgan (231 & 338) lost to Essex (345 & 275/5) by five wickets at the SWALEC Stadium. Greg Smith hits seven runs off five Allenby deliveries to ensure a nervy final over is not required. It has been four fantastic days of cricket in South Wales with Foster’s men ending up on top in the final moments. A great advert for championship cricket.
6:30pm - Foster’s gone! A leading edge is pouched by Jim Allenby at midwicket off Michael Hogan. Thankfully for Essex, their captain has guided them to within seven runs of victory.
6:25pm - Foster takes five runs from the final two balls of Cosker’s over to reduce the equation to nine from the last three overs. Pettini is four runs short of a half-century, and the away side are almost there.
6:20pm - Essex require 16 from 20 balls...
6pm - Essex need 45 from eight overs, but will be made to do it without Napier. He’s caught at long-off by William Bragg for 10 to give Cosker his second wicket. James Foster comes to the middle looking to see his team to victory.
@EssexCricket on Twitter: Graham Napier is off the mark with a boundary from Graham Wagg. Essex are 217 for 3 another 58 are required and there are 10 overs left
5:45pm - It was all going Essex’s way in South Wales until Dean Cosker removed Bopara. The England batsman made a sprightly 33 but the away side still need 64 to win with Graham Napier elevated to number five. It’s going to go down to the wire at the SWALEC Stadium...
@GlamCricket on Twitter: 68 runs now needed in 13 overs
@EssexCricket on Twitter: The start of the final hour and Essex require another 94 from 16 overs. 182 for 2 Ravi Bopara 17 Mark Pettini 9
5:20pm - All this commotion results with us having just one game to now focus attentions on. That's at the SWALEC Stadium where Essex have reduced their run-chase to double figures...
5:15pm - RESULT! Northamptonshire (335 & 215/8 dec) drew with Leicestershire (234 & 168/3) at Wantage Road. Handshakes all round as both sides settle for a draw. Solid innings from Smith, O’Brien and Eckersley ensured the hosts’ hopes of forcing an unlikely victory in the final session quickly dissipated.
5:10pm - RESULT! Kent (159 & 63) lost to Worcestershire (194 & 31/0) by 10 wickets at Canterbury. What a crazy two days it has been at Canterbury! Daryl Mitchell and Matthew Pardoe take their side over the finish line as the visitors coast home. It is Richardson who has been the undoubted match-winner, however. A superb performance from the 38-year-old.
@EssexCricket on Twitter: Essex need another 102 from 19 overs. 113 for 2 at the moment, Bopara 13 Pettini 4.
5:00pm - Another vital run out, this time at the SWALEC where Bopara does not know where to look. He sent Westley back after a single and smart work from Michael Hogan and Mark Wallace did for the opener, 12 shy of what would have been a fluent century. Essex can still do this, needing 107 with eight wickets in hand, but Westley was a big source of their momentum. Elsewhere, Leicestershire are 168 for three after Trent Copeland dismissed Niall O'Brien for 59 and Worcestershire have 17 of the 29 runs they need to complete Kent's misery.
4:45pm - Today's early finishes in Division One saw Sussex climb up to fourth place with a game in hand on the three sides above them. Nottinghamshire are one place and 11 points below having also played four matches, while defeated duo Surrey and Derbyshire occupy the bottom two.
4:40pm - Richardson mops up the Kent tail to finish with 7-22 and an equally impressive match analysis of 12-63. Skipper James Tredwell was left high and dry on six not out as his team capitulated to 63 all out. Worcestershire need 29 to seal victory within two days.
4:30pm - What a way to go - Eckersley is run out and Northants will hope new man Ramnaresh Sarwan is unable to maintain the 23-year-old's pace. Over at the SWALEC there is a much-needed breakthrough for Glamorgan as Jim Allenby pins Mickleburgh lbw for 66, bringing Ravi Bopara to the crease.
4:25pm - Ned Eckersley is threatening to make things ever so slightly interesting at Wantage Road. Leicestershire's number three has 41 from 38 balls, including eight fours. The upshot is the Foxes have moved on to 133 for one, needing 204 from a minimum of 29 overs. Westley and Mickleburgh remain on 71 and 66, with Essex 139 without loss at Glamorgan.
@WorcsCCC on Twitter: Kent 54-8 at tea. #COYP #RICHARDSONNNNNx5
4:05pm - Regrettably for Kent, it looks like humble pie is on the menu as they head in for tea. Andrew has three to add to Richardson's five and the hosts are eight down, 19 in front.
4:00pm - Having speculated upon Chris Devine's luncheon intake, we can confirm he's just finished "stuffing his face with cake". Here's his latest from Lord's, where England duo Jonathan Trott and Joe Root will be entitled to a slice or two themselves if they keep this up.
3:50pm - Tea is being taken in two of today's three remaining County Championship games. All of those are in Division Two following wins for Sussex at Derbyshire and Nottinghashire over Surrey.
Essex are 113 without loss in their second innings, requiring a further 162 runs on the final afternoon to beat Glamorgan at the SWALEC Stadium.
Leicestershire are 100 for one in their second innings, requiring a further 237 runs on the final afternoon to beat Northamptonshire at Wantage Road.
Play continues at Canterbury, where Kent have collapsed spectacularly to 51 for seven on the second afternoon - just 16 ahead of Worcestershire in their second innings.
3:35pm - Following an unbeaten 34 with the bat, Steven Crook has the breakthrough for Northamptonshire. Smith is the man to go, a run short of his half-century and Leicestershire are 87 for one in nominal pursuit of 337. A result is starting to look far more likely at the SWALEC Stadium, where Westley and Mickleburgh have both passed fifty in an unbroken opening partnership of 108. With Essex needing a further 167 runs and boasting some big hitters still to come, a thrilling finish is on the cards in Cardiff.
3:30pm - It's 10 in the match for the remarkable Richardson. Mitchell took his fourth catch of the match off Kent's chief tormentor as Darren Stevens went for three. A first-ball single from Geraint Jones then gave his side a one-run lead, but Richardson immediately pinned Harmison lbw to leave the hosts 36 for six.
@EssexCricket on Twitter: 28 overs bowled and 42 are left. Essex 78 without loss need another 197 to win. Tom Westley 42, Jaik Mickleburgh 36.
3:20pm - Gareth Andrew is now in on the act, trapping Rob Key in front for a 42-ball five. That leaves Kent 30 for four, still five behind. Ben Harmison is unbeaten on 17 having struck four boundaries and desperately needs some support.
3:00pm - So, with around 40 minutes to play until tea, here is a brief summary of the state of play: Sussex stormed to a nine-wicket win over Derbyshire at the County Ground, while some fine seam bowling helped Nottinghamshire defeat Surrey by 114 runs.
Worcestershire, and more specifically Alan Richardson, have Kent in all sorts of bother on day two at Canterbury. Essex's Tom Westley and Leicestershire's Greg Smith are closing in on half-centuries as their sides' games with Glamorgan and Northamptonshire in Division Two head for draws on the final afternoon.
2:45pm - Richardson is having an absolute disco! Mike Powell joins Nash in departing for single figures to the Staffordshire-born seamer and Kent are 15 for three - still 21 behind Worcestershire. By contrast, Essex and Leicestershire are 52 and 39 without loss respectively as they move towards draws away from home.
2:30pm - Remarkably, that victory is Nottinghamshire's first on home soil in the County Championship since April last year. Bowlers remain on top at Kent. The irrepressible Alan Richardson, fresh from a five-wicket haul in the first innings, sent Sam Northeast back to the pavilion three balls into Kent's second attempt. Brendan Nash followed in his next set of six, caught by Daryl Mitchell, and Worcestershire have their hosts reeling on four for two.
@EssexCricket on Twitter: Tom Westley collects his 5th boundary and Essex are 30 without loss. Westley 24, Jaik Mickleburgh 6.
2:15pm - As in Nottingham, an engaging, low-scoring contest appears to be on the cards at Canterbury. Coles has just wrapped up an impressive return of 5-31 to dismiss Worcestershire for 194 on the second afernoon, a first-innings lead of 35 over Kent.
2:10pm - RESULT! Nottinghamshire (274 & 191) beat Surrey (207 & 144) by 114 runs at Trent Bridge. Well that didn't take too long - Stuart Meaker departs as fellow England international Samit Patel gets among the wickets, but it was Franks and Gurney with three apiece who did the telling damage for James Taylor's side.
2:05pm - The end is nigh for Surrey at Trent Bridge. Tim Linley is Franks' third scalp today, the Nottinghamshire all-rounder displaying splendid figures of 3-16 from 12 overs.
2:00pm - Here on the county cricket blog we grazed on a humble tuna melt this lunchtime. We expect Chris Devine will have been more extravagantly fed at Lord's. Follow his live report here, as England's batsmen look to capitalise on a fantastic morning with the ball.
@kentcricket on Twitter: Wicket!!! Gareth Andrew lbw Coles 9. Worcestershire are 183-8, 24 runs ahead!!
1:50pm - We're back under way in the four ongoing LV=County Championship matches. At Wantage Road, Northamptonshire are still batting and Crook and Duckett are certainly not hanging around. Leciestershire's two overs since lunch have leaked 25 runs, with Duckett dispatching Ollie Freckingham to the fence to bring up a maiden first-class fifty. Hang on, here's the declaration on 215 for eight. Leicestershire need an unlikely 337 for victory.
1:10pm - Wallace eventually went for 101, bowled by Ravi Bopara. Michael Hogan departed in similar fashion to Tim Phillips to conclude Glamorgan's second innings on 388 and leave Essex with a challenging 275 for victory in two sessions. Harry Gurney is the pick of the Nottinghamshire bowlers at Trent Bridge with 3-40. He dismissed Steven Davies for 28 as Surrey staggered to 138 for eight, meaning Notts are poised to join Sussex - who dispatched Derbyshire by nine wickets earlier - among today's victors.
Here's how things stand at lunch:
Derbyshire (223 & 219) lost to Sussex (401 & 43 for one) by nine wickets at Derby.
Surrey are 138 for eight, needing a further 121 runs for victory against Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge.
Glamorgan are 338 all out in their second innings, setting Essex 275 to win at the SWALEC Stadium.
Northamptonshire are 190 for eight in their second innings, leading Leicestershire by 311 runs at Wantage Road.
Worcestershire are 180 for seven in their first innings, leading Kent by 21 runs at Canterbury.
12:50pm - Back on the field, Wallace has brought up his century for Glamorgan; Nottinghamshire still need three Surrey wickets for victory following a brief stoppage for bad light; an unbroken ninth-wicket stand between Ben Duckett and Steven Crook looks to have tipped the balance decisively in Northamptonshire's favour against Leicestershire and a quickfire double means England Lions' seamer Matt Coles has figures of 3-21 as Kent battle back against Worcestershire.
12:40pm - Away from today's play there is a huge blow for Durham with news that Dale Benkenstein must undergo shoulder surgery that will rule him out until the latter end of the season.
12:25pm - Graham Napier accounts for Dean Cosker caught behind to give James Foster his fourth victim of the Glamorgan innings, but Foster's opposite number Mark Wallace is still there for the hosts. Despite heading into the match with a highest championship score of 18 so far this season, Wallace is three short of three figures having moved Glamorgan to 376 for eight - a 262-run lead.
@TrentBridge on Twitter: Wicket! Batty departs - caught by Patel off Gurney. Surrey 114-7. Notts' bowlers sharing the wickets around nicely.
12:05pm - RESULT! Derbyshire (223 & 219) lost to Sussex (401 & 43 for one) by nine wickets at the County Ground. Derbyshire's defence of 41 lasted 5.5 overs as Luke Wells and Yardy breezed their way to respective unbeaten scores of 23 and 18 and sealed a maximum haul of 24 points for Sussex.
12:00pm - So with an hour played, Sussex are within 11 runs of wrapping up victory at Derbyshire; Surrey's prospects at Trent Bridge are fading fast and Essex and Leicestershire need quick wickets to set up run-chases that would go to the wire. On day two at Canterbury, Neil Pinner and Michael Johnson are consolidating matters for Worcestershire, who are 26 behind Kent's first-innings 159 with five wickets remaining.
@TrentBridge on Twitter: Wicket! Franks on fire! de Bruyn his latest victim, edging behind to the grateful gloves of Wessels for 14. 107-5.
11:50am - Robbie Williams is on song for Leicestershire this morning. Two wickets in as many overs mean Northamptonshire are 114 for seven in their second innings, 235 ahead. Tim Groenwald has dismissed Chris Nash without scoring at the County Ground, meaning Sussex's Mike Yardy is in at three and not getting the morning off he might have felt was in prospect.
@derbyshireccc on Twitter: Groenewald to open up. Sussex require 42 runs for victory.
@leicsccc on Twitter: WICKET: Keogh falls to Williams. Northants 230 ahead, 4 wkts left.
11:35am - That's a wrap for Magoffin and Sussex. The rangy Australian removes Derbyshire's last man Mark Footitt for a breezy 15 and the victory target is 42. Meanwhile, Glamorgan's Graham Wagg joins Burns in registering a morning fifty before being pouched. Reece Topley was the Essex bowler celebrating and Glamorgan's 344 for seven means a second-innings lead of 232 in Cardiff.
11:30am - Nottinghamshire have landed a potentially vital blow against Surrey at Trent Bridge. Two balls after sending Paul Franks to the fence to bring up his half-century, opener Rory Burns was caught behind off the same bowler to leave his side 90 for four. They need 169 more runs for victory.
11:18am - The game is almost up for Derbyshire. A wicket apiece for impressive Sussex seam duo James Anyon and Steve Magoffin means they are now 204 for nine, a second-innings lead of 26, and their guests will hope to be merrily on their way back down to the south coast by lunchtime.
11:03am - Kent paceman Charlie Shreck strikes with the third ball of the day to have Alexei Kervezee caught at the wicket for 29. Worcestershire are now 105 for five, still 54 runs in arrears, and the hosts are eyeing an unlikely first-innings lead.
11:00am - Cloudy but dry would appear to be the consensus around the grounds, so hopefully we'll all be under way on time with an intriguing day in prospect.
10:45am - We're 15 minutes away from play getting back under way across the country, so here's a quick summary of the game situations in Divisions One and Two as they stand:
Glamorgan are 303 for six in their second innings, leading Essex by 189 runs at the SWALEC Stadium.
Northamptonshire are 94 for five in their second innings, leading Leicestershire by 215 runs at Wantage Road.
Worcestershire are 105 for four in their first innings, trailing Kent by 54 runs at Canterbury.
10:30am - Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the five LV= County Championship games taking place today. After Yorkshire and Middlesex secured impressive victories yesterday, Sussex are closing in on their second win of the season at Derbyshire.
Along with the action at the County Ground, three other matches conclude today, while Worcestershire will hope to capitalise on dismissing Kent for 159 on day one at Canterbury.