Hardus Viljoen took three wickets as promotion-chasing Sussex were reduced to 96 for 4 in reply to Derbyshire’s 338 on the second day of their Specsavers Championship match at Hove.
The South African quick bowler looked back to his best following an injury-ravaged first season with the Peakites and had figures of 3 for 32 from nine overs at lunch after he removed Stiaan van Zyl (17) and Chris Nash (20) via inside edges before bowling Luke Wells, who had made a fluent 46, in the last over before the interval.
Wells had earlier shared a stand of 59 for the second wicket with van Zyl but Ben Brown and Luke Wright were tasked with a rebuilding job after Viljoen removed Nash and Wells in successive overs just before lunch.
Harry Podmore had earlier broken through with his fifth ball when Angus Fraser poked outside off stump and was caught at second slip for one.
Derbyshire’s first innings had been ended with the first ball of the day when Jofra Archer uprooted Harvey Hosein’s off stump for 38. Hosein had helped Derbyshire’s last two wickets add 51.
Vithushan Ehantharajah at Middlesex 62-3 v Hampshire
Pretty much the perfect start for Hampshire, thanks in part to some pro-active captaincy from Jimmy Adams. We’ve seen a lot of situations where visiting captains (sometimes even Middlesex ones) come here and moan about the pitch having no carry and what not. But rather than curse to himself, he’s moved his bowlers around and settled upon a partnership that worked.
Fidel Edwards opened from the Gatting Way End for three overs before he was pulled from the attack for losing his line. This was the end which was most affected by the rain and, as a result, was is a little bit of a slip-and-slide. So, Adams moved bustling seamer Ian Holland to that end and shifted Edwards to the Pavilion End. The result was Nick Compton bowled comprehensive by the West Indian, followed by Stevie Esknazi nicking off to an excellent from wicketkeeper Tom Alsop, diving to his right in front of first slip. In between, Ian Holland drew Sam Robson’s edge which required a smart grab from Adams at second slip. Upon Eskinazi’s wicket, the rains returned. A fair bit will have hit the pitch by the time the covers came on and the tarpaulin’s been brought out, too. Middlesex, in more ways than one, are shooting themselves in the foot.
Essex 146-2 trail Warwickshire by 55 runs
Essex quietly strengthened their advance towards a potentially title-clinching win over Warwickshire's on the second morning of their Specsavers County Championship match at Edgbaston.
In reply to the home side's 201 all out, the Divison One leaders resumed this morning on 69 without loss and were 146 for two when rain forced an early lunch.
Former Warwickshire captain Varun Chopra was still unbeaten on 79 (120 balls, 15 fours).
Two wickets fell in the truncated session. Opening pair Chopra and Nick Browne took their partnership to 72 before the latter (24, 65 balls) edged Keith Barker low to second slip. Tom Westley then moved fluently to 24 before edging England team-mate Chris Woakes to wicketkeeper Alex Mellor.