Jamie Smith’s maiden double century and a second first-class hundred from Jordan Clark gave early pacesetters Surrey a stranglehold on the LV= Insurance County Championship match with Gloucestershire in Bristol.
Unbeaten on 111 overnight, Smith had moved to 234 not out, from 430 balls with 34 fours, by the time his side were finally bowled out for 603 shortly after tea on day two.
Smith shared a stand of 244 – a record for Surrey’s eighth wicket – with Clark (137) but Gloucestershire responded impressively by posting 86 without loss.
Ben Sanderson blasted a gaping hole in the fragile Essex batting with four quickfire wickets to capitalise on Luke Procter’s marathon century and put Northamptonshire in total command at Chelmsford.
The pace bowler found the edges of a succession of bats – including Sir Alastair Cook’s – to help reduce Essex to 95 for eight at the close in reply to Northamptonshire’s 390.
Northamptonshire were able to add a further 157 runs to their overnight score, with Procter taking exactly six hours to compile his 113.
Keith Barker claimed his second five-wicket haul of the season as Hampshire and Lancashire continued their close-fought encounter.
The Lancashire-born Barker helped Hampshire secure a nominal six-run first-innings advantage after dismissing the visitors for 240, with Phil Salt and Tom Bailey’s half-centuries keeping their side well in the match, before Hampshire closed on 103 for three.
England Test hopefuls Dawid Malan and Harry Brook contributed superb centuries to a Yorkshire revival against Kent at Headingley.
Having been 227 for four, Kent were all out for 291 as Haris Rauf took a career-best five for 65. Yorkshire then recovered from 23 for three to close on 326 for five after Malan (152) and Brook (131 not out) shared a fourth-wicket partnership of 269.
Struggling Somerset can finally see light at the end of the tunnel after their bowlers put them in control against champions Warwickshire.
Josh Davey, Craig Overton and Lewis Gregory each claimed two wickets, while Jack Brooks, Tom Abell and Jack Leach all weighed in with one apiece as Warwickshire, replying to the home side’s first innings of 458, reached the close on 197 for nine.
Ed Barnard’s unbeaten century led an impressive fightback by Worcestershire after Nottinghamshire had threatened to wrap up victory inside two days at Trent Bridge.
After Stuart Broad had delivered a timely reminder of his batting prowess with an unbeaten 47 off just 27 balls to more than double Nottinghamshire’s overnight lead, the England pace bowler (two for 49) helped reduce Worcestershire to 32 for four in their second innings, still 75 behind.
But, despite facing some hostile bowling as Broad sought to build his case for a Test recall this summer, the Pears battled through to the close for the loss of only one more wicket at 225 for five – a lead of 118 – with Barnard on 101.
Cheteshwar Pujara scored his third century in as many matches to give Sussex control against Durham at Hove.
It has been a difficult start to the season for Sussex but India Test batter Pujara scored a sublime hundred on his delayed Hove debut.
He was 128 not out having guided Sussex to 362 for five, a lead of 139 runs, when bad light brought play to an end with 13 overs still remaining.
Middlesex are closing in on victory over Leicestershire after managing 370 in their first innings at Lord’s.
Mark Stoneman scored 108 while a century stand from John Simpson and Luke Hollman took Middlesex away from the visitors, who had been bowled out for only 149 on day one.
Shaheen Shah Afridi then took two wickets as Leicestershire were reduced to 37 for three at stumps, still needing 184 to make the hosts bat again.
David Lloyd led from the front as Glamorgan fought back against Derbyshire at Derby.
After Michael Hogan and Michael Neser each took four wickets to bowl Derbyshire out for 368, the Glamorgan captain scored 84 from 104 balls, sharing an opening stand of 103 with Andrew Salter.
Marnus Labuschagne made an unbeaten 53 and Sam Northeast 49 as Glamorgan closed on 240 for four.