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Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Middlesex set new record as Essex win

Sam Robson’s innings of 253 for Middlesex against Sussex surpassed his previous best of 231, which he scored against Warwickshire at Lord’s in 2016

Middlesex posted their highest-ever first-class total while there were innings victories for Essex and Kent in the County Championship.

After opener Sam Robson went on to score 253, Middlesex declared on 676-5 in their Division Three game at Sussex.

Kent clinched a win over Worcestershire and Division Two leaders Essex also saw off Gloucestershire before lunch.

Elsewhere, Durham were frustrated by Glamorgan and Surrey’s tail gave them a chance of beating Northamptonshire.

Division Two leaders Essex registered their second innings victory of the second stage of the Championship, adding to their previous thrashing of Glamorgan.

Needing 200 to make the hosts bat again, Gloucestershire added two runs to their overnight score of 132-5 before three wickets fell without adding a run at Chelmsford.

Ryan Higgins and Zafar Khan put on 54 for the ninth wicket but Simon Harmer (4-78) broke that stand when Khan edged to Alastair Cook at first slip.

And, when Higgins (38) was run out attempting a second run by Shane Snater at square leg, Essex had all five wickets they needed before lunch and a win by an innings and three runs.

A final-wicket partnership of 83 helped Surrey into a second-innings lead of 319 at Northamptonshire.

Simon Kerrigan (4-36) removed Hashim Amla and added the scalps of Will Jacks (50) and Reece Topley as the visitors slumped from their overnight score of 102-4 to 155-9.

But Gus Atkinson (41 not out) and last man Amar Virdi (47) both recorded career-best scores to frustrate the home bowlers and give Surrey the upper hand.

Amar Virdi batting for Surrey
Amar Virdi hit seven fours in his innings of 47 – beating his previous first-class best of 21 not out

The visitors built early pressure with the ball as Northants lost Ricardo Vasconcelos and Harry Gouldstone to slip to 37-2, but Emilio Gay (44 not out) and Rob Keogh (46 not out) saw them through to 106-2 at the close.

With 214 more needed to win on the final day, the match is well poised.

At Chester-le-Street, Durham could not close out victory over Glamorgan and require three more wickets on the final day.

After Hamish Rutherford departed for 76 the visitors were 151-6, still trailing Durham’s first-innings score by 255 runs.

But a 163-run partnership between Dan Douthwaite (96) and Andrew Salter stalled the progress made by the home attack, and Salter remained on 82 not out when the visitors closed on 333-7 – 73 runs short of avoiding an innings defeat.

Division Three

Middlesex racked up a mammoth score on day two at Hove – beating their previous best of 642-3 declared against Hampshire in 1923 – having resumed on 400-2.

Opener Sam Robson took his overnight score of 192 to register a new career-best 253 before he skied Jack Carson to Tom Haines at mid-off. The former England man hit 30 fours and one six in his 356-ball innings.

A century from Robbie White and Martin Andersson’s 88 further strengthened the visitors’ position in a 174-run fifth-wicket partnership, and Middlesex declared shortly after tea with White unbeaten on 110.

In reply, Sussex captain Tom Haines (73) and Ali Orr put on an unbroken 103 in 29 overs in the final session as the hosts also enjoyed benign batting conditions.

At Canterbury, Worcestershire resumed on 91-6 in their second innings against Kent, still 169 behind, and Matt Milnes trapped Ben Cox lbw in the fourth over of the day.

Ed Barnard and Joe Leach (49 not out) put on 56 for the eighth wicket before Barnard fell lbw to Grant Stewart for 44.

Darren Stevens (3-49) removed Josh Baker and, despite a last-wicket stand of 36, a victory by an innings and 56 runs was confirmed when Dillon Pennington edged Nathan Gilchrist to first slip.

Derbyshire recovered from 56-5 to bat out the day against Leicestershire, although they still have work to do to avoid the follow-on.

Replying to the Foxes’ first-innings total of 528, Derbyshire appeared to be on the ropes after Chris Wright had Billy Godleman caught behind and Ben Mike bowled Matthew Critchley.

Derbyshire batsman Brook Guest celebrates his century
Derbyshire batsman Brook Guest celebrates his maiden first-class century passionately

But Brooke Guest and Anuj Dal came together for a 227-run sixth-wicket stand – beating the county’s previous best of 212 set against Essex in 1932.

The partnership was only broken when Dal miscued a pull and was caught on 106 by Lewis Kimber off Mike.

Guest subsequently fell for 116 when he edged behind and Derbyshire closed on 313-8, still 215 runs behind.

Day Three scoreboards

Division Two

Chelmsford: Gloucestershire 76 & 197 (Bracey 50; Harmer 4-78) v Essex 276 (Walter 96). Essex won by an innings and 3 runs.

Chester-le-Street: Glamorgan 97 & 333-7 (Douthwaite 96, Salter 82*, Rutherford 71) v Durham 503-8 dec (Jones 81, Raine 74, Trevaskis 55*)

Northampton: Surrey 252 & 238 (Jacks 50; Kerrigan 4-36) v Northamptonshire 171 & 106-2 (Keogh 46*, Gay 44*)

Division Three

Canterbury: Worcestershire 133 & 204 (Leach 49*; Gilchrist 3-36) v Kent 393 (Leaning 97, Billings 72). Kent won by an innings and 56 runs

Derby: Leicestershire 528 (Hill 113) v Derbyshire 313-8 (Guest 116, Dal 106)

Hove (day two): Middlesex 676-5 dec (Robson 253, Stoneman 174, White 110*, Andersson 88) v Sussex 103-0 (Haines 73*)

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