Relentless Compton doubles up again
Nick Compton continued his remarkable start to the season with another double century as Somerset exercised total dominance over Nottinghamshire on day three at Trent Bridge.
After registering scores of 236, 99 and 133 in his previous three first-class outings this year, Compton excelled once again by compiling a marvellous unbeaten 204.
The former Middlesex batsman extended his second-wicket stand with Arul Suppiah, who made 124, to 216, before sharing a further 217 with James Hildreth inside 36 overs as Somerset declared 283 ahead on 445 for two.
Hildreth’s own contribution stood at 102 from 114 balls; he and Compton, whose second century spanned just 81 deliveries, accelerated rapidly in the evening session.
Notts’ openers, Alex Hales and Neil Edwards, were able to see out the 12 overs that followed but their side trailed by 236 on 47 without loss.
Defending champions Lancashire were facing a battle to avoid a second successive defeat at Aigburth after Rikki Clarke and Darren Maddy hit centuries for last year’s runners-up Warwickshire.
Clarke and Maddy, who struck 140 and 112 respectively, put on 224 for the eighth wicket as the visitors launched a magnificent recovery from 81 for seven to post 329 all out.
Faced with a first-innings deficit of 79, Lancashire then slipped to 44 for four, left-arm seamer Keith Barker doing much of the damage with 3-20.
A positive result appeared increasingly likely at the Kia Oval, where wickets continued to tumble in the match between Surrey and Worcestershire.
After wrapping up their hosts’ first innings for 140 this morning, with Alan Richardson completing figures of 6-47, Worcestershire then subsided to 119 all out as England international Stuart Meaker returned 6-39.
The evergreen Richardson was not finished and picked up a further three scalps, before Rory Hamilton-Brown’s unbeaten 55 helped Surrey close 152 ahead on 131 for six.
Durham seamer Graham Onions enjoyed another successful day to keep the pressure on Middlesex at Lord’s
Onions picked up three first-innings wickets for the second day running as Middlesex crumbled to 188 all out and then contributed 20 to a useful 10th-wicket stand of 44 with Scott Borthwick, which helped Durham to 238 and a lead of 50.
When the hosts batted again, it was Onions who made a valuable breakthrough, bowling Andrew Strauss, who made six, for the second time in the match.
Middlesex were still 29 behind at stumps on 21 for one.
Glamorgan and Hampshire’s Division Two clash at the SWALEC Stadium was headed for a thrilling finish after a topsy-turvy third day.
Skipper Stewart Walters hit fifty and Ben Wright a century as the home side, having lost their opening two games, managed 256 second time round.
In the end, that total was a disappointment, with Glamorgan’s last six wickets falling for just 46 runs - leaving Hampshire needing 204 for victory.
Their run-chase was derailed by the loss of early wickets, but Sean Ervine and Michael Bates - unbeaten on 37 and 13 respectively - dug in to steer the visitors to 112 for four, needing a further 92.
Yorkshire took control in their encounter against Essex despite Ravi Bopara’s brilliant century at Headingley Carnegie.
Bopara played a lone hand of 117 not out to lead the visitors, who resumed on 72 for five, to a first-innings total of 199 in reply to Yorkshire’s 246.
That gave the White Rose a 47-run lead, and they extended that to 191 as opener Joe Root struck 67 in a second-innings effort of 144 for two.
Gloucestershire’s victory charge gathered steam in their clash with in-form Kent at Canterbury.
Will Gidman took a further two wickets to finish with figures of 5-43 as the home side, after resuming on 119 for six, ended 105 runs adrift of Gloucestershire’s 255.
The all-rounder’s older brother, Alex, then looked impressive in compiling 60 not out - and he was well supported by Hamish Marshall’s unbeaten 55 - as the visitors moved to 191 for three, a lead of 296.
Leicestershire continued to dominate against leaders Derbyshire, who they dismissed for just 180.
The visitors added only six runs to their overnight 318 for seven before being bowled out at Derby, after which their bowlers took centre stage.
Wayne White returned to haunt his former club as Derbyshire ended 144 runs in arrears, with Tony Palladino’s 38 ensuring they narrowly avoided the follow on.
Leicestershire extended their lead to 220; they closed on 76 for one, with Matthew Boyce hitting 43 not out.