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Category: County Championship Division Two

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Middlesex lose appeal against points deduction as relegation stands

• Middlesex appealed against over rate penalty in match with crossbow incident• ‘Rules relating to over rates are clear,’ says cricket discipline commission chairMiddlesex have lost their appeal against the two-point penalty imposed on them by the ECB …

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The five county cricketers of the year

It’s time to salute the County Championship’s standout players this season: Kumar Sangakkara, Alex Hales, Alex Davies, Jamie Porter and Simon Harmer

• Fans from all 18 counties review the year
Will Macpherson’s verdict on the season

By Gary Naylor for the 99.94 Cricket Blog, part of the Guardian Sport Network

It was said that Barry Richards, his career coinciding with South Africa’s isolation, became bored with batting that notch below international as it came so easily to him. Well, it can’t have come much more easily to the South African champion than it came to Kumar Sangakkara, an all-time great of the game, whose powers, at almost 40 and in his last season of first-class cricket, seem not so much undiminished, as enhanced.

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County cricket final day: Middlesex, Hampshire and Somerset fight drop – live!

Live updates from Edgbaston and all the latest from TauntonUnbeaten Essex sign off by thrashing YorkshireComments are closed early on but you can email Will or tweet 10.44am BST Inspection underway here, and warm-ups happening in earnest. Maybe start a…

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County cricket: Jennings to leave Durham for Lancashire, plus day two of final round – live!

Live updates from the final round of county fixturesMiddlesex unhappy after struggling on Somerset surfaceEmail Will, tweet @willis_macp or comment below the line 11.28am BST Grievous Bodily Harmer is coming on fro Sam Cook. 29 for one. 11.26am BST Oni…

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County cricket talking points: Essex are still unbeaten with one game to play

The side that won promotion a year ago and won the title a fortnight ago looked as if they would suffer their first defeat of the season. But they just keep winning

By Gary Naylor for the 99.94 Cricket Blog, part of the Guardian Sport Network

Whenever the scoreboard ticked over to 76, the late Brian Johnston would announce that it was “Trombone Time”, so how he would have enjoyed Essex’s win over Hampshire at the Rose Bowl. The hosts’ Aussie captain, George Bailey, un-Pontingly enforced the follow-on after the wheels had finally come off in the champions-elects’ annus mirabilis, dismissed for 76 in their first dig. Cue 20-year-old Dan Lawrence’s century, backed up by the old hands, James Foster and Neil Wagner, who posted 82 for the ninth wicket to set an awkward fourth-day target of 185 for a suddenly nervy and much-needed win. The victory fanfares were soon blaring again for Essex, as Sam Cook led the attack with 5-18 to despatch Hampshire for (you guessed it), 76 stretching Essex’s lead at the top of the table to 69 points. They’re just trolling their opponents now.

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County cricket final round: Essex v Yorkshire, Somerset v Middlesex – live!

10.25am BST

Not a pretty scene at Grace Road, where it’s might wet.

10.24am BST

A bit on prize money. Essex have obviously sewn up the really important bit, but there’s plenty for Surrey and Lancs to play for. Second place shares £240,000, and third £115,000. The winners of Division Two gets £120,000, and the runner-up £57,000.

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County cricket: Surrey v Somerset, Yorkshire v Warwickshire – live!

Somerset and Yorkshire in battle to avoid relegation from Division OneEmail Will here. Tweet @willis_macp or join the discussion below the line 11.09am BST The weather in south London today is absolutely stunning. 11.06am BST Wicket at Durham: Latham g…

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County cricket: Middlesex v Lancashire, Surrey v Somerset and more – live!

10.29am BST

Two huge play and misses outside off in the first three balls of the day from Livi…

10.28am BST

Starting on time at Headingley, which is good. But not at the Ageas, because of bad light. I’m convinced Essex won’t lose that game.

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County cricket: Middlesex v Lancashire, Surrey v Somerset and more – live!

11.17am BST

Essex are nine down as Wagner goes first ball! Abbott on a hat-trick.

Any one know if Essex can be dragged into the relegation battle?

11.17am BST

Ryan McLaren finally gets off the mark this morning after 46 minutes. 38 consecutive dot balls for him since 6:11pm last night.

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County cricket: Middlesex v Lancashire, Surrey v Somerset and more – live!

12.26pm BST

50 for James Vince at the Ageas! Got to make it count now…

12.24pm BST

Five minutes til lunch here at Lord’s, and Simpson and Voges have dug in nicely. 75 for four.

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County cricket live: Essex set to seal title plus Surrey v Yorkshire – live!

9.31am BST

Good morning. Today should be the day. Lancashire are in all sorts of trouble at Taunton, where there’s rain on the way. When they fail to win that game – which, surely, surely they won’t win – Essex will be the County Champions for the first time since 1992. To be honest, Essex better win because I have already written 1,000 words on them doing so.

So I’m Will Macpherson and I’m at the sun-drenched Oval to tell you about all that and more. Here, Surrey have Yorkshire following on. Will the pitch break up? Can they force a win? I don’t know if it mean anything, but Andy Hodd just scored a superb overhead kick in Yorkshire’s football match. There’s Div 1 action at Uxbridge too. It’s a tussle for points. Middlesex currently have none.

Related: Wily Ryan ten Doeschate paves way for glorious march of the Essex boys

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County cricket: Essex close on title at Warwickshire, and more – live!

10.49am BST

Rob Mason describes himself as “yet another Essex fan…”

“Loving the recent work of two 24-year-olds from North East London: Jamie Porter and Harry Kane,” he writes.

10.48am BST

A lesser spotted wicket at the Oval!

Freddie van den Bergh has two, Marsh gone, stumped. 181 for two, and a long way to go to avoid the follow-on.

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County cricket live – Surrey v Yorkshire, Warwickshire v Essex and more!

11.15am BST

As someone has pointed out on twitter: the bowler’s Holden, the batsman’s ….

Congrats to Felix Organ who is making his debut for @hantscricket v @Middlesex_CCC at @UxbridgeCC. Welcome to the PCA pic.twitter.com/spFGFTIm6w

11.11am BST

Morning Stuie!

@willis_macp morning will! Out all day so cmon glos

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County cricket live – Surrey v Yorkshire, Warwickshire v Essex and more!

10.57am BST

News from the Oval is that Mark Stoneman looks in absolutely delightful touch. He’s moved to 18, after back to back boundaries off Sidebottom, through cover point and square-leg.

10.54am BST

Morning Will and chums. Warwickshire lead by 13 after four overs is the optimistic way of looking at things here at sunny-ish Edgbaston, where Jamie Porter has continued his golden season for champions-elect Essex with the early wickets of Sam Hain and Jonathan Trott – both lbw – in his first nine balls.

First one trapped Hain on the back leg as the bat jacknifed down at an awkward angle, then Trott was pinned on the front pad. If there was a day for Ian Bell to end a drought of centuries that goes back to April last year, this is it. Chris Woakes back for the Bears, while Neil Wagner is in for his second spell as the Essex overseas left-armer. Tom Westley plays too.

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Somerset beat Warwickshire – and the rain – to boost hopes of survival

• Victory sealed in short dry spell with four wickets in 90 minutes
• Warwickshire now look more or less destined for relegation

As Somerset riotously celebrated the Warwickshire wicket that sealed a vital 169-run win, Tom Abell’s long-awaited first as captain, the Edgbaston groundstaff fired up the hover-cover and rushed it out to protect the strip. It had been that sort of rain-wrecked week in Division One, and Somerset were the only side able to force a win; on the final morning they waited three hours for the chance but clinically mopped up the last four wickets in just 90 minutes.

With three games to go they are 30 points clear of Warwickshire, who are destined for the drop, and just 13 behind Yorkshire and Middlesex, who drew damply at Headingley. Somerset’s game against Middlesex in the final week at Taunton, surely to be played on a spitting spinner at Ciderabad, looms large. Scores remain unsettled.

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County cricket: Warwickshire v Somerset, Lancashire v Essex and more – live!

Live updates from Edgbaston and around the groundsHameed outlines Ashes intent for LancashireFeel free to ping Will an email; or tweet him @willis_macp 11.50am BST Umpires inspecting at Edgbaston… Stumps waiting to be put in. 11.49am BST Worcestershi…

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County cricket live – Lancashire v Essex, Hampshire v Surrey and more!

10.14am BST

Welcome to Old Trafford for day three of the fourth to last round of county cricket – live! for this fine summer! I’m Will Macpherson and I’m here to guide you through the action from here and the other eight games on offer. There’s some other cricket on offer, apparently, but we need not mention that.

The weather is nice now but nasty later, I’m told. The chances of a result in this Lancashire-Essex game, given the loss of day one, were pretty slim as is, but losing the final session today would end all hope. Haseeb Hameed batted beautifully last night and resumes on 85 this morning. He’s dug his team out of a horrible hole, to be honest.

Related: County cricket: Lancashire v Essex, Surrey v Hampshire and more – live!

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County cricket: Lancashire v Essex, Surrey v Hampshire and more – live!

9.59am BST

That room in the picture ATL is the one that I’m sat in. It’s brightened a touch – wouldn’t think the covers’ll be on for that much longer.

9.58am BST

Good news from Headingley!

Captains out there for the toss.

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Peter Moores turns sights to treble after Nottinghamshire’s T20 triumph

• Division Two leaders face second-placed Worcestershire from Tuesday
• ‘We work hard and have found a way to deliver when it counts’

“Bloody right I would!” said Peter Moores when asked if he would consider the treble his Nottinghamshire side are two-thirds of the way to completing – after Saturday’s Finals Day triumph – to be “proper”, given that the unfinished business is merely the Division Two title. From Tuesday they host their nearest rivals, Worcestershire, who are 32 points behind. Promotion could be sealed in a hurry.

For Moores this is success at a third county, after ending Sussex’s 164-year wait for a Championship win in 2003 and winning the title with a homegrown Lancashire side in 2011, and the second time he has succeeded after the crushingly disappointing spells as England coach. Lesser characters would have been broken by one of them; Moores has overcome both. Paul Downton’s infamous soundbite – “the outstanding coach of his generation” – was an unbearable weight and merely provided a stick with which to beat Moores. But at domestic level Downton was not remotely incorrect.

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County cricket: Essex v Somerset, Surrey v Middlesex and more – live

11.09am BST

The Essex stream! Watch.

LIVE | Watch the action from The Cloudfm County Ground as we begin Day Four against @SomersetCCC ➡️ https://t.co/PRB68IwJOS #ESSvSOM pic.twitter.com/xFeUokZQ2Y

11.08am BST

Interesting…

No Nick Compton this morning…retired hurt on the scorcard…So Robson and Eskinazi getting the day started

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