Thrilling finale awaits in derby
An intriguing finish was set up at the Kia Oval, where Middlesex require a further 209 to seal an LV= County Championship Division One victory over London rivals Surrey.
Rory Burns struck 121 and Arun Harinath 109 as the hosts, who entered the day on 86 for one, responded to being dismissed for 144 in the first innings by posting 341 second time round.
That represented something of a disappointment, however, after Toby Roland-Jones’ 5-39 rescued the visitors, who were staring down the barrel with Surrey 230 for one.
Requiring 254, Middlesex reached 45 for one in reply, with Chris Rogers falling to Gareth Batty, who - along with spin twin Murali Kartik - will be confident of enjoying success tomorrow.
Durham stepped up their push for a third successive victory by building a commanding lead against Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge.
The visitors, 40 ahead on first innings following Graham Onions' sensational one-man show yesterday, followed up the seamer’s fine work today.
Mark Stoneman led the way, striking a fine 114 before skipper Paul Collingwood chipped in with 51 not out to take Durham, who remain in the relegation dogfight, to 301 for seven - a lead of 341.
Rain once again hampered the action at New Road, where Lancashire are taking on Worcestershire.
In between long breaks due to inclement weather, the hosts moved to 251 for seven having resumed on 219 for six; Neil Pinner top-scored with 82.
After claiming a second batting bonus point, Worcestershire declared before the Red Rose subsequently reached 10 without loss.
Division Two leaders Derbyshire require another 38 runs to avoid the follow-on after Yorkshire dodged the showers to produce an impressive bowling display at Headingley Carnegie.
Ryan Sidebottom reduced the visitors to 42 for four this morning with three quick wickets - all caught behind by on-loan Sussex wicketkeeper Andrew Hodd.
Wes Durston and Ross Whiteley, who compiled 84 and 35 respectively, led the recovery with a fifth-wicket stand of 114, but late wickets from spinners Azeem Rafiq and Adil Rashid left Derbyshire on 233 for eight. Former White Rose slow bowler David Wainwright was unbeaten on 45.
Hampshire’s promotion aspirations suffered a blow as Northamptonshire built a healthy lead at the Ageas Bowl.
Luke Evans claimed 4-25 and Andrew Hall 3-35 to help dismiss the hosts - who resumed on 125 for two - for 276.
Northants then advanced their lead to 256 by reaching the close on 176 for five thanks to Alex Wakely’s unbeaten 61 and 59 from Rob Newton.
Tom Westley and Owais Shah struck centuries as Essex secured a first-innings lead against Glamorgan at Colchester.
Westley compiled 185 and Shah 138 in a second-wicket stand of 191 and, despite Robert Croft triggering a collapse with 5-135, the hosts declared on 520 for nine - a lead of 82.
Will Bragg and Nick James negotiated a tricky six-over spell to take Glamorgan to 16 without loss, 66 runs behind.
Kent’s bid to bounce back from successive defeats was thwarted by the weather again at Bristol, with Rob Key's side still 29 for one against Gloucestershire after no play was possible on day three.