Troughton builds on first-wicket base
Title-chasing Warwickshire banked three batting points against Surrey as resurgent captain Jim Troughton topped up an opening stand of 130 by Varun Chopra and Ian Westwood in the LV= County Championship Division One clash at Edgbaston.
After scoring only 50 runs in his first nine innings of the season, Troughton has made 81 against Sussex, 132 and one versus Somerset and now an unbeaten 74 in piling up 288 from his last four knocks.
Surrey got themselves in contention as the leaders slipped back to 197 for four in the afternoon, but understudy wicketkeeper Richard Johnson produced a timely 49, his highest championship score, to help Warwickshire to a first-day total of 322 for six.
Recalled from a loan spell at Derbyshire because of an injury to Tim Ambrose, he was confident enough to pull Jon Lewis for six before Stuart Meaker struck twice with the new ball in the final hour.
Johnson's miscued drive to mid-off ended a partnership of 98 with Troughton and Rory Burns took off to his left at point to hold a sharp chance and see off Rikki Clarke.
If the morning belonged to Warwickshire, as Chopra and Westwood put together their second century stand of the season, it was Surrey's afternoon with two wickets for Chris Jordan and one apiece for their spinners Gareth Batty and Murali Kartik.
Yet it ought to have been the other way round. Surrey's opening bowlers regularly beat the bat, the impressive Meaker more so than Lewis, but Chopra and Westwood, having started with boundaries in the first over from Lewis, could not be shifted.
The left-hander, Westwood, probably had the tougher time against Meaker and he should have gone when Kartik entered the attack as early as the 12th over.
The opener turned the Indian spinner's first delivery to short-leg where Burns grabbed the ball into his midriff but did not hold on long enough for the umpires to rule the catch had been completed.
Chopra had faced 87 balls when he reached a half-century for the fourth time in his last eight championship innings, with his seventh four, and Westwood's fifty arrived half an hour after lunch when he pulled Jordan for his sixth boundary.
Jordan's second spell, costing 45 runs in six overs, was littered with long-hops and no-balls but it did have the desired effect in bringing Surrey back into the game.
Chopra was on 60 when he got an inside edge on to his stumps and Will Porterfield, in attempting to pull another loose delivery, only succeeded in deflecting a leg-side catch to Steven Davies behind the wicket.
Westwood batted more than three hours before he was lbw for 67, aiming to turn Batty off his pads, and Darren Maddy appeared to be pushing towards midwicket when he was leg-before to Kartik.