On a day of intermittent showers at Old Trafford, Glamorgan shovelled their way to three batting points against Lancashire, despite the best efforts of Jimmy Anderson.
The partnership of the day came between Dan Douthwaite and Callum Taylor, who both passed fifty as they put on 81 for the seventh wicket. Douthwaite was whippy and plucky, Taylor, patiently defensive, against Anderson, with the new and old ball, and the tweaking and twirling Liam Livingstone and Matt Parkinson. There were three wickets each for Anderson, bowling on a cherry pip, and Saqib Mahmood, who earlier limped off the pitch with an ankle problem. Keaton Jennings and Alex Davies then fiddled 22 in 18 overs in sunshine that belied Saturday’s cataclysmic weather forecast.
Essex and Nottinghamshire continued to don each other’s garments in their rapidly-advancing match at Trent Bridge. Alastair Cook had time to velvet six boundaries in his 35 before being first man out to Lyndon James. But with his dismissal, hopes of batting out the match faded as Tom Westley and Dan Lawrence followed cheaply, though Nick Browne was unbeaten on 60 at the close, with the deficit 95. Steven Mullaney had dominated the morning, making 117 as Notts advanced to 323; with Zimbabwe-born Netherlands-playing Shane Snater snapping up seven for 98.
Gareth Berg and Ben Sanderson continued to weave their hypnotic spell over Sussex, whose second innings threatened to stumble just as their first until Stiaan van Zyl breathed calm with 71 not out. Northamptonshire had earlier declared on 441 as Saif Zaib wafted to his maiden first-class century, Adam Rossington fell for 97 and Berg and Tom Taylor indulged in some late-order heave-ho.
Somerset added second-day plenty as their tail biffed and bashed, led by 74 from Craig Overton and 34 from nightwatchman Jack Leach. Keith Barker picked up four for 67. Overton then thundered in with the ball, taking three for 24 as Hampshire limped to 92 for three, still 165 behind.
Michael Burgess was the last man out for Warwickshire after a maiden first-class hundred for the club nudged their first innings to 343. Worcestershire’s reply was dominated by the ever-reliable Jake Libby, who made 74 until Olly Stone snaffled him, and an unbeaten fifty from Jack Haynes.
Gloucestershire’s man of the moment, James Bracey, skipped to a pretty 74 at Lord’s, and in front of an audience on Sky TV. Ryan Higgins and Ian Cockbain then helped nudge Gloucester to a 63-run first-innings lead, leaving Middlesex time to collapse to 26 for three before stumps.
Mark Stoneman and Rory Burns both made unbeaten half centuries as the spring air filled Surrey’s batting sails much as it had Leicestershire’s. Mid-afternoon, Amar Virdi had strolled off Grace Road with six for 171, and Leicestershire 496, after a maiden first-class century for Harry Swindells.
Joe Root squirted Matthew Quinn into the gloves of Ollie Robinson after a beguiling 41 as Yorkshire chased Kent’s 305. Gary Ballance made an unbeaten 91 in polka-time, followed by 59 from Harry Brook. Earlier Miguel Cummins had lofted Kent past 300, with two fours and two sixes.