Read gives fuel to Notts' title fire
On a day when attention turned to the fortunes of England's fringe players, former gloveman Chris Read shone brighter than them all with a crucial century for Nottinghamshire against Warwickshire.
On day one at Trent Bridge, Naqaash Tahir took 4-89 and India Test fast bowler Sreesanth 3-65 on county debut, but Nottinghamshire recovered from 43 for three to 388 all out, on the back of Read's 110.
The Notts captain hit 17 fours from 149 balls, and Australia’s Twenty20 call-up Adam Voges (68) was one of several others to chip in.
England’s Ian Bell and Test hopeful Jonathan Trott were both still waiting for their chance to impress from numbers three and four respectively as Warwickshire closed on 24 for none.
Lancashire’s England Lions call-up Gary Keedy took six top-flight wickets for 85 in championship favourites Durham’s 270 all at Old Trafford.
England seamer Graham Onions had time to deliver only five balls before rain brought an early close with the home reply on nought without loss.
Worcestershire’s Lion Stephen Moore fell for only 28 against Sussex at Hove, out of the bottom club’s 256 all out.
England one-day international all-rounder Luke Wright (5-66) and Pakistani seamer Yasir Arafat (3-83) were in the wickets for the hosts. Sussex then reached 48 for two.
There were no significant runs for Moore’s fellow Lions opener Michael Carberry, gone for 23 in Hampshire’s 250 all out against Yorkshire at Basingstoke.
But there was a painstaking 79 from Carberry’s fellow left-handed opener Jimmy Adams, and a half-century too for Michael Lumb against his old county.
Ajmal Shahzad took 4-72 for Yorkshire, who replied with 13 for none before stumps.
In the Division Two promotion battle at Wantage Road, Rob Key’s 90 was the cornerstone of Kent’s 244 all out against Northamptonshire.
Johan van der Wath (3-32) was the hosts’ most successful bowler. Northants had time to reach 38 for one before the close.
Rock bottom Leicestershire’s struggles continued as they limped to 177 all out against promotion-chasing Derbyshire after choosing to bat first at Grace Road.
Seamers Greg Smith and Steffan Jones took seven wickets between them, before Derbyshire were 67 for one in reply.
England batsmen Alastair Cook and Ravi Bopara had to wait for their chance to impress at Lord’s after Essex captain Mark Pettini put Middlesex in.
The hosts closed on 280 for six, seamer Graham Napier taking 3-52 and young opener Sam Robson (110) taking his time over a maiden hundred.
Robson, who hit nine fours from 273 balls, shared a fifth-wicket stand of 143 with Dawid Malan (73).