Surrey beat holders Essex to extend lead at the top of Division One
Last Updated: 06/09/18 7:44pm
Surrey's seamers blew away County Championship title-holders Essex as they extended their lead at the top of Division One to 43 points.
The visitors' 10-wicket victory at Chelmsford coupled with Somerset's sensational tie with Lancashire on Tuesday leaves the table-toppers on course to claim their first red-ball title since 2002 with three rounds remaining.
Having been forced to follow-on on day two, the Eagles resumed day three 13-0 - still trailing by 212 runs - and it took just 17 balls for Tom Curran to trap Varun Chopra lbw before he bowled Tom Westley.
Essex collapsed to 86-5 as Rikki Clarke (4-47) had opener Nick Browne (21) and Dan Lawrence (3) caught before South African Morne Morkel (3-68) dismissed captain Ryan ten Doeschate.
Ravi Bopara offered some resistance with an unbeaten hard-fought 81 off 122 balls, with his sixth four of the innings sending the hosts into the lead for the first time in the match only for Amar Virdi to bowl Samuel Cook to bundle Essex out for 226.
Rory Burns knocked off the single Surrey required for victory with the fourth ball of their second innings as they clinched their eighth-successive Championship win of the season.
Meanwhile, Hampshire boosted their chances of surviving relegation as they completed an emphatic 114-run victory over bottom-placed Worcestershire. SCORECARD
It took a little over 10 overs on day three for the visitors to wrap up the hosts' innings at New Road, as Kyle Abbott claimed his sixth wicket when he bowled Ross Whiteley before Dale Steyn (3-41) had fellow South African Wayne Parnell caught with the Pears bowled out for just 133.
The home side remain rooted to the bottom of the table on 90 points while the away side are fifth on 114 points.
Only 33 overs of cricket were possible on the third day of Nottinghamshire's match against Yorkshire at Trent Bridge - Yorkshire advancing from 258-4 to 357-5 before the rain fell thanks to Tom Kohler-Cadmore (92no) and Jonny Tattersall (51). SCORECARD
Yorkshire - who saw Tattersall dropped twice in the thirties - trail by 91 runs with one day remaining and have a further seven overs in which to score 43 more to secure maximum batting bonus points.
Elsewhere, in Division Two, promotion-chasing Sussex completed a comprehensive 274-run victory over Leicestershire at Hove. SCORECARD
A 70-run eighth-wicket partnership between Chris Jordan (54) and Jofra Archer (33) helped the hosts fight to 210 all out in their second innings as they set the visitors 451 for victory.
However, Ollie Robinson picked up his third five-wicket haul of the season as the Foxes were bowled out for 176 - with Colin Ackermann top-scoring with 52.
The win has moved the Sharks on to 171 points and temporarily up to second, with third-placed Kent's match still ongoing.
Kent are seven wickets away from winning an eighth first-class match of the season as the push for promotion to the Championship top tier hots up. SCORECARD
The hosts reduced Northamptonshire to 56-3 in their chase of 320 at Canterbury with Matt Henry (2-28) doing the early damage, as he trapped Ben Curran (18) lbw and had Luke Procter (4) caught behind.
Glamorgan remain adrift at the bottom of the table after they fell to a 169-run defeat by Derbyshire in Derby. SCORECARD
Tony Palladino and Martin Andersson picked up four wickets each as the away side were bundled out for a measly 132, in their chase of 302, although wicketkeeper Chris Cooke (67) scored his third half-century of the season.
A lower-order fight followed by early wickets kept Middlesex in with a chance to clinch a final-day victory over Gloucestershire in Bristol to keep alive their outside hopes of promotion. SCORECARD
A 53-run eighth-wicket stand between James Harris (35) and Ethan Bamber (27 not out) helped the visitors scrape to 242 all out before Tim Murtagh picked up two late scalps to reduce the hosts to 87-4, holding a lead of 141 runs.
Only 31.1 overs were bowled between Warwickshire and Durham at Edgbaston as the Division Two leaders took a slender lead into the last day. SCORECARD
Barry McCarthy (43) and Matt Salisbury's (37) lower-order hitting propelled the away side to 292 all out and seamer Chris Rushworth trapped opener Will Rhodes lbw to reduce the hosts 28-1 before rain forced an end to proceedings.