Durham take grip on title

Lv County Championship

Mark Davies

Mark Davies took season-best figures of 3-19 as the LV= County Champions secured victory at the Riverside

Durham stretched their lead at the top of the LV= County Championship Division One table beyond 40 points when they eased to an eight-wicket win against Warwickshire at Chester-le-Street.

Needing 101 to complete their seventh win of the season, they lost just two wickets in completing their task with Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Michael Di Venuto both unbeaten on 41 at the end.

Earlier, Warwickshire lost their final five wickets for the addition of just 37 runs as they were bowled out for 238.

Jim Troughton had frustrated the home attack to bring up his century shortly after lunch, but after he had reached 111 the right-hander offered a catch to Di Venuto off Ian Blackwell that precipitated a late-order collapse.

Durham lost Mark Stoneman and Will Smith to edged catches in reply before Shivnarine Chanderpaul, who made a duck in the first innings, got off the mark with a streaky edged four off Chris Woakes.

The West Indies batsman then almost played on against the same bowler on 19 as the home side struggled against a Warwickshire attack without Boyd Rankin after he suffered a groin injury in the first innings that has ruled him out of Ireland's one-day international against England.

But when Rikki Clarke replaced Sreesanth, and Chanderpaul pulled and cut his first two balls for four, the game was as good as over.

Clarke’s two overs cost 21 and the Guyanese left-hander finished it with a blaze of strokes, lifting Ant Botha’s left-arm spin over long-on for six to complete the task.

Warwickshire had started the day well with Clarke surviving the first half hour with Troughton, before a 30-minute rain break.

On the resumption Ian Blackwell came on for the second over and struck with his third ball.

Clarke advanced to lift it to long-on, but miscued to deep mid-off, where Thorp ran back to hold a good catch.

That made it 150 for five, at which point Warwickshire led by 12 runs with 17-year-old Ateeq Javid coming in to join Troughton.

On 55 overnight, Troughton had added only four when he survived a sharp return chance to Callum Thorp, but he dug in and found a staunch ally in Birmingham-born Javid.

While the youngster took 32 balls to get off the mark, and scored three in his first 75 minutes at the crease, Troughton proceeded steadily to his hundred off 207 balls.

It was his first significant score since making a double century in the second game of the season at home to Hampshire, and he had failed to reach 20 in his previous 10 innings.

He departed for 111, however, when he edged Blackwell to Di Venuto at slip.

Despite overnight figures of 9-0-10-0, Mark Davies did not bowl until the new ball was taken in mid-afternoon and he used it well to rip through the tail and claim season-best figures of 3-19.

Javid had just begun to play some strokes, reaching 21, when Davies produced a beauty, which lifted and left him to earn a big edge on the way to Phil Mustard.

Davies pinned Woakes lbw in his next over, then the flailing Sreesanth edged Mitchell Claydon to Chanderpaul at first slip and finally Naqqash Tahir drove Davies to mid-on.

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