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Category: County Championship Division Two

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County cricket: Surrey v Hampshire and more – live!

2.06pm BST

Qadri gets Colly and Durham are four down at Chesterfield. They still need 115…

2.05pm BST

So, I don’t want to alarm you, but Rory Burns nearly got out just now. It was a near miss on a run out, as you might expect, because Hampshire sure as hell have no other options for dismissing him. He nudged into the legside set off, and didn’t bother running his bat in, accepting his fate. The throw missed, and he picked up a pair of overthrows so all’s well that ends well and all that. 38 for none. He has 25.

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County Championship roundup: George Bailey helps Hampshire take revenge

• Hants post fifth highest score of 648-7 declared; Surrey 113-1
• Stevie Eskinazi hits 178no in Middlesex’s 302-6 v Warwickshire

Hampshire have not forgotten about the two days last July when, at a sweltering Ageas Bowl, Surrey posted 637 for seven declared to set up a dramatic win. It was, for Hampshire’s attack, filthy toil and, as one Surrey player admitted, they had continued batting after tea on the second day “just to piss them off”.

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County cricket: Surrey v Hampshire, Yorkshire v Somerset and more – live!

10.30am BST

#SangaNetWatch : it’s finished, he looks satisfied. Genuinely I can’t tell you sad I am that he’s missing this game. I want to watch him make more tons.

10.28am BST

Apparently there is rain elsewhere! I’m wearing shorts!

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County cricket: Surrey v Hampshire, Yorkshire v Somerset and more – live!

10.30am BST

#SangaNetWatch : it’s finished, he looks satisfied. Genuinely I can’t tell you sad I am that he’s missing this game. I want to watch him make more tons.

10.28am BST

Apparently there is rain elsewhere! I’m wearing shorts!

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County cricket: Jimmy Adams in awe of James Vince as they gang up on Surrey

• Vince catches the eye while Hampshire duo both make centuries
• Somerset fight back against Yorkshire after captain drops himself

“He’s nice to bat with but you can stand at the other end and feel a little inadequate,” said one Hampshire centurion, Jimmy Adams, of another, James Vince, at the end of a day dominated by the pair. They had put on 161, bullying Surrey after they had worked hard to dismiss Lewis McManus, bowled by a snorting, swinging Sam Curran yorker, and Rilee Rossouw, caught at second slip off Curran’s brother, Tom.

Related: County cricket: James Vince pushes England case with Hampshire century

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Simon Harmer grabs nine wickets for Essex and they do for Middlesex

• Compton hits first century since August but to no avail
• Derbyshire end tortuous two-year wait for a victory

These are heady days for Essex cricket. After defeating Middlesex by an innings and 34 runs, despite losing a day to rain, they sit proudly top of the County Championship by 28 points, after seven years out of the top flight. They have won three in succession and, whisper it, in turning over the title winners so emphatically, have the look of champions themselves.

Related: County cricket: Essex thrash Middlesex to go 29 points clear – as it happened!

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County cricket: Essex v Middlesex and more day-nighters – live!

1.59pm BST

Got him first ball! Harmer’s got one to turn massively and it’s kissed the outside edge, gone through Foster’s gloves and was taken by Cook at first slip… 27 for one.

1.57pm BST

Harmer kicking us off from the River End, Gubbins on strike.

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County cricket: Essex v Middlesex and more day-nighters – live!

2.22pm BST

Roland-Jones’s magnificent beast of a run up very nearly extends all the way to the short boundary at the Hayes Close End here at Chelsmford.

2.21pm BST

Four more through point for Cook … 126 without loss, and just 120 behind. Ominous for the Champs.

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County cricket: Essex v Middlesex and more from the day-nighters – live!

1.47pm BST

Afternoon Stuie! Yeah, big shame. Let’s hope there’s some cricket for me to tell you about today.

@willis_macp afternoon will shame about the rain

1.42pm BST

Delayed start at Hove, by the sound of things…

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County cricket: Yorkshire v Surrey and more as day-night matches begin – live!

1.49pm BST

Dawid Malan, fresh from his big day in Cardiff, captains Middlesex, who have retained Ryan Higgins over James Franklin, I assume because he’s not fit to bowl. Gubbins is back from the Lions, and replaces Robson who has joined up with the Lions.

1.46pm BST

Teams at Edgbaston! Conor McKerr, who impressed recently on loan at Derbyshire, makes his Surrey debut.

Yorkshire: Lyth, Lees, Root, Ballance (capt, to be replaced by Harry Brook after day 2), Handscomb, Bairstow (wk), Bresnan, Rashid, Brooks, Patterson, Coad.

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County cricket: Yorkshire v Surrey and more as day-night matches begin – live!

1.49pm BST

Dawid Malan, fresh from his big day in Cardiff, captains Middlesex, who have retained Ryan Higgins over James Franklin, I assume because he’s not fit to bowl. Gubbins is back from the Lions, and replaces Robson who has joined up with the Lions.

1.46pm BST

Teams at Edgbaston! Conor McKerr, who impressed recently on loan at Derbyshire, makes his Surrey debut.

Yorkshire: Lyth, Lees, Root, Ballance (capt, to be replaced by Harry Brook after day 2), Handscomb, Bairstow (wk), Bresnan, Rashid, Brooks, Patterson, Coad.

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County cricket talking points: Essex lead Lancashire as season hits halfway point

Six observations from the week’s action, including praise for Simon Harmer, Dane Vilas, Paul Stirling, Samit Patel, Joe Clarke and Barry McCarthy

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

At the halfway point of the season, Essex are top of Division One. Even with Alastair Cook available, few expected that sentence to be written when Ryan ten Doeschate’s side planned this season, back in the top flight and without the services of old pros Graham Napier and David Masters. But the batting keeps coming at you – nine centuries shared between six batsmen in seven matches, the latest from Ravi Bopara (192) and James Foster (121) setting up the win over sorry Warwickshire, rock bottom and 40 points from safety. It’s a different story among the bowlers though, with just three crossing double figures for wickets in 2017: Jamie Porter (31); Neil Wagner (23) and Simon Harmer (33). The South African off-spinner relished the heat at Chelmsford, setting records with match figures of 66–24–128–14, proving that not every Kolpak is focused on the pound-rand exchange rate.

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Pink balls at night may not be every batsman’s delight | Vic Marks

All County Championship matches will be day/night this week in a pre-Test experiment but players who are colour blind may have difficulties

There may be some splutterings from the disgusted of Tunbridge Wells, with cornflakes flying into the marmalade as if propelled by a Purdey after reading about County Championship matches starting at 2pm, finishing around 9.30 under floodlights and being played with a pink ball. On Monday this will be the case in all nine games around the country.

A pink ball! The colour pink has so many connotations. Many years ago I was accosted by a mischievous EW Swanton, who asked: “Whatever are you doing writing for that pinko rag?” (After a moment of confusion I realised that he was referring to the Observer). Swanton may not have approved of pink balls either, though there were sages more reactionary than him.

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Pink balls at night may not be every batsman’s delight | Vic Marks

All County Championship matches will be day/night this week in a pre-Test experiment but players who are colour blind may have difficulties

There may be some splutterings from the disgusted of Tunbridge Wells, with cornflakes flying into the marmalade as if propelled by a Purdey after reading about County Championship matches starting at 2pm, finishing around 9.30 under floodlights and being played with a pink ball. On Monday this will be the case in all nine games around the country.

A pink ball! The colour pink has so many connotations. Many years ago I was accosted by a mischievous EW Swanton, who asked: “Whatever are you doing writing for that pinko rag?” (After a moment of confusion I realised that he was referring to the Observer). Swanton may not have approved of pink balls either, though there were sages more reactionary than him.

Continue reading…

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

10.52am BST

The umpires are coming out to have a look because they think it’s a little bit dark. I really don’t want a delayed start. I really don’t want that.

10.50am BST

No word on whether we’ll have a contrivance at the Riverside…

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County cricket: Middlesex v Yorkshire, Lancashire v Hampshire and more – live!

County Championship updates from around the groundsThe Spin: we could be tickled pink by cricket day-nightersAnd feel free to email Will or tweet him @willis_macp 11.48am BST With Hameed gone, Stoneman and Jennings are getting the band back together. 2…

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County Championship roundup: Ballance struggles to hold Yorkshire together

• Samit Patel and James Pattinson puts Notts on top at Trent Bridge
• Ravi Bopara makes first Championship ton since 2014 for Essex

Gary Ballance made runs, of course he did, but his was a lone hand, and Yorkshire are in deep trouble at Lord’s, where they have lost their last three games in remarkable fashion. Closing nine down and 260 behind, a remarkable effort is required to avoid a fourth loss.

Throughout Middlesex’s first innings of 446, the nagging sense was that a little more lay in the track than the total suggested. Adil Rashid had taken two wickets, including the last, Steven Finn, with balls that stayed low, and scoring had only been totally simple under the baking sun on Monday afternoon, with the centurions, Sam Robson and Paul Stirling, flying along. From the moment Robson fell caught behind to Ben Coad for 159, their batting on the second morning lacked fluency, in the face of improved Yorkshire bowling.

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County cricket: Middlesex v Yorkshire, Lancashire v Hampshire and more – live!

11.13am BST

Four batting points for Middlesex as Simpson nails Brooks down the ground for four. 353 for four. They’d love a fifth, would Middlesex.

11.12am BST

A wicket for Jimmy at Old Trafford! Brad Taylor edges to second slip and Jimmy has two. Hampshire are 352 for nine.

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Sam Robson jogs a few memories as Middlesex make merry against Yorkshire

• Middlesex 337-4 v Yorkshire
• Hampshire frustrate Lancashire, Essex go slow against Warks

The first five games of Middlesex’s title defence have not exactly gone to plan. Some of their cricket has been passive, and injuries and call-ups have been disruptive, not least for this game, with the batting backbone of Nick Gubbins, Dawid Malan and Adam Voges all absent. The impressive unbeaten run is gone, too, and they are winless.

But they like playing Yorkshire – who have lost their past three at Lord’s, and their last three against Middlesex, all in remarkable fashion – and through centuries from Sam Robson (152 not out) and Paul Stirling (111), the latter’s long overdue first in Championship cricket, they have carved a strong position on a pitch that appears green but largely played true (save for a couple that stayed low) under a beating sun. As they tend to when Stirling is in town, runs flowed freely throughout.

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County cricket: Middlesex v Yorkshire, Lancashire v Hampshire and more – live!

  • Updates from around the grounds in the latest round of action
  • Get in touch! You can email Will here or tweet him @willis_macp

10.47am BST

In no particular order:

10.39am BST

So this is a repeat of that game last year. One of the captains then, Andrew Gale, is now coaching Yorkshire and the other, James Franklin, is still Middlesex captain. Toby Roland-Jones, the hero that hazy September day, will lead Middlesex’s attack, and how they need him to stand up: their batting looks very shaky, without Gubbins, Malan and Voges.

Anyway, we’ve had a toss. Despite their green tinge, it’s not a surprise that Middlesex have won the toss and decided to bat. Here are the teams:

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