A six-wicket haul from Kemar Roach propelled Surrey to a nine-wicket win over Warwickshire on day four of their County Championship Division One clash at the Kennington Oval in London on Monday.

Roach took figures of 6-46 off 14 overs to restrict Warwickshire to 209 all out in 59 overs in their second innings, leaving Surrey needing only 89 to win.

Dom Sibley with 46* and Rory Burns with 30 then led the way as Surrey reached 89-1 in the 23rd over.

Earlier in the game, Warwickshire made 343 in 102.5 overs in their first innings thanks to an excellent 108 from Ed Barnard.

Roach also took 2-81 in the first innings in support of Jordan Clark and Sean Abbott who took 4-64 and 2-51, respectively.

Surrey then replied with 464 in 111.4 overs thanks to 155 off 179 balls from Jamie Smith as well as half centuries from Dom Sibley and Sean Abbott.

Full scores:

Warwickshire 343 off 102.5 overs (Ed Barnard 108, Jordan Clark 4-64, Sean Abbot 2-51, Kemar Roach 2-81) & 209 off 59 overs (Rob Yates 52, Ed Barnard 44, Kemar Roach 6-46)

Surrey 434 off 111.4 overs (Jamie Smith 155, Dom Sibley 64, Sean Abbott 50*, Craig Miles 5-43) & 89-1 off 22.4 overs (Dom Sibley 46*, Rory Burns 30)

Dan Lawrence and Cameron Steel ignited Surrey’s push for a first Vitality County Championship win of the season as Somerset were left in a spin at the Kia Oval.

With Surrey already in the ascendancy after posting 428 for a first-innings lead of 143, Lawrence was surprisingly entrusted with the new ball alongside Jordan Clark and snared both Somerset openers.

Lawrence had his third wicket with his ever-improving off-spin after drawing the edge of James Rew as Somerset ended day three on 204 for six, just 61 runs ahead in this Division One clash.

Steel dismissed Tom Lammonby for 51 and Tom Banton for 11 with his leg-breaks while Gus Atkinson bounced out Lewis Goldsworthy, who made a polished 58 before getting a tickle on an ill-judged pull.

Somerset captain Lewis Gregory (23 not out) and Kasey Aldridge (20no), who earlier finished with five for 64, helped to steady the visitors but Surrey will be pressing for a win on the final day.

England opener Ben Duckett registered his first half-century of the campaign but his dismissal sparked a top-order collapse from Nottinghamshire against Worcestershire at Trent Bridge.

After the Pears were all out for 355 for a 44-run deficit, Duckett made a typically breezy 63 but was the first of three batters to fall in a single over off overseas signing Nathan Smith (four for 29).

The New Zealand seamer also dismissed first-innings centurion Joe Clarke and Matthew Montgomery as the hosts stumbled from 125 for one to 125 for four before limping to 151 for seven and a lead of just 195.

Alex Lees’ century was backed up by weighty contributions from Ollie Robinson, Graham Clark and Ben Raine but Durham still had to follow-on against Warwickshire at Edgbaston.

Lees went past 10,000 first-class runs in his 145 and Robinson’s 60, Clark’s 76 and Raine’s 93 pushed Durham to 517 but they needed 549 after Warwickshire had compiled a colossal 698 for three declared.

After asking Durham bat again, the visitors lost Lees and captain Scott Borthwick in quick order and went to stumps on 12 for two, still 169 runs short of making Warwickshire bat for a second time.

Jordan Cox thumped six sixes in his unbeaten hundred to fire Essex to 257 for four and a lead of 374 against his former club Kent at Chelmsford.

Matt Critchley took five for 105 as Kent slipped from 251 for one following centuries from Ben Compton (165) and Daniel Bell-Drummond (135) to 413 all out and give Essex a 117-run lead at halfway.

Cox’s dashing 116 not out off just 89 balls leaves Essex in a position to declare overnight as they push for a second win of the season.

Keaton Jennings made 172 while George Bell was run out for 99 and denied a maiden first-class ton as Lancashire posted 484 in response to Hampshire’s 367 at the Utilita Bowl.

Will Williams had both Hampshire openers caught behind second time around as the hosts closed on 39 for two.

In Division Two, England batters Joe Root (51) and Harry Brook (68) made fluent fifties for Yorkshire, who need six wickets to defeat Gloucestershire at Bristol.

The efforts of Root and Brook allied to 113 from Adam Lyth lifted Yorkshire to 434 for six declared, leaving a victory target of 498 but Gloucestershire slumped to 97 for four.

John Simpson’s 205 not out and Danny Lamb’s 134 underpinned Sussex’s 694 for nine declared against Leicestershire, who closed on 86 for one and need 270 to make their opponents bat again at Grace Road.

Derbyshire closed on 40 for one after being set 401 to win by Glamorgan, who had Chris Cooke’s unbeaten 126 to thank for ushering them to 361 for seven declared at Cardiff.

Nathan Fernandes became Middlesex’s youngest debut centurion in first-class cricket since 1862 as the 19-year-old made 103, while Max Holden’s 211 not out and Leus du Plooy’s unbeaten 196 saw Middlesex reach 553 for two replying to Northamptonshire’s 552 for six declared in a run-fest at Wantage Road.

Alec Stewart is braced for the “toughest” season yet, but has still set Surrey the target of winning a third consecutive Vitality County Championship title.

It was confirmed last month that Stewart would leave his director of cricket role at the end of 2024 in order to spend more time with his family following 11 years in the post.

Stewart signed his first contract with the county in 1981 and has been involved in six Championship successes, but he is striving for one more.

While there have been multiple back-to-back Division One winners in recent seasons, Brian Close’s Yorkshire side from the 1960s are the last team to win three Championships in a row.

Chelsea-fan Stewart is well aware of how difficult that will be, especially with a T20 World Cup in June, but has challenged Surrey to go up a level in the longest format and to fulfil their potential in white-ball cricket with an overdue Vitality Blast win.

“It’ll be the hardest year because of the World Cup,” Stewart reflected.

“We’ll have players who will go from the IPL (Indian Premier League), straight into the World Cup or near enough.

“This season is the toughest because it’s an extra month or six weeks that we won’t have those players for, but we’ve known that, so therefore you try and plan for that.

“I’m greedy, I want to win everything. We won it (Vitality Blast) in 2003, the first year, and we’ve got to Finals Day since but we haven’t won it.

“So, of course I’d like to win it, but so would 17 other counties.

“The Championship is still, for me, the pinnacle. The fact we’ve won it two in two is fantastic. Can we do it three in three? That’s what we’re going for.

“And then it’s how do we play, because the champions are always the side to beat and have we got the skillsets? And can we up our game enough?

“We were good last year, but I didn’t think we were great last year.”

Surrey players are determined to give Stewart a fitting farewell, but even the former England captain knows it will not really be goodbye.

The Kia Oval has largely been Stewart’s home for the best part of five decades and even longer for the family given his father Micky made his debut for the county in 1954.

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Stewart acknowledged: “It’s never going to end. Formally, yes, but I’ll still be coming to this place or still feel a part of it.

“They want me to try and stay in some role but I’ve said, I’m never going to walk away completely, but they’ve got to get the person in place first, because that person may not want me hanging about, which I fully understand.

“So, yep, I’m stepping down from a role I have thoroughly enjoyed and continue to enjoy. And then in December or whenever it will be, then I’ll drive out and say goodbye.

“Whatever job you’re in, you want to leave it in a better shape than when you took it over. That’s for others to judge, but we’ve certainly made progress.

“I want to win every trophy, but I get as much enjoyment seeing a (Ollie) Pope, (Will) Jacks or (Jamie) Smith come through our system as youngsters, come into our first team and then going to play for England because that to me counts as success.

“The trophy cabinet has the Championship in it at the minute, but if you have another cabinet, it’d be full of Surrey players that have come through the pathway then got England caps.”

Surrey wicketkeeper-batter Jamie Smith will relish the chance to take on Nathan Lyon in Friday’s season opener at Lancashire but is relaxed about his future international prospects.

Smith made his England bow in September when he appeared in two ODIs against Ireland after an excellent domestic campaign.

The 23-year-old has long been earmarked as a future international since he scored a century on his first-class debut in 2019 against an MCC attack which included Stuart Broad. Last year he turned potential into results.


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A tally of 736 red-ball runs helped Surrey to Vitality County Championship success and Smith is excited to begin the new campaign against a high-quality Lancashire line-up that should include Aussie spinner Lyon.

“Yeah, I think you have to (relish it) and with aspirations of playing Test cricket, you will come up against world class players anyway,” Smith told the PA news agency.

“There is always a little bit of analysis that goes into it and he’s played a lot. A few guys have played against him in the changing room, so I guess it is getting those experiences as well.

“We know he is a fantastic player. No one gets that many Test wickets (530) without being a fantastic player so you respect what he has done, but also play him like anyone else on the day.”

After Smith started the 2022 season with a maiden double ton at Gloucestershire but failed to back it up, he was determined to bring a level of consistency to his game last year.

What followed was two hundreds, which included a sensational 114 off 77 balls to help Surrey chase 501 at Kent, four fifties and an average of 40.88 with a 65.3 strike rate.

His success was not just limited to red-ball cricket either, with contributions with both the bat and gloves able to fire Surrey to Vitality Blast finals’ day and he also starred for Birmingham Phoenix in The Hundred.

It earned Smith two England white-ball caps in September and his name is in the mix for a Test shot should Surrey team-mate Ben Foakes be discarded.

Smith added: “That was important to put a season together instead of a few scores. For me what was a big turning point was staying consistent with my approach.

“There are going to be low scores in there, but instead of panicking about it or changing the way you want to play, I stayed quite consistent with a positive style.

“It was obviously an incredible end to a fantastic summer and fantastic recognition to have that (England debut).

“No one can ever take it away from you that you have represented your country, no matter who it was against or in what capacity.

“It was a proud day for my family. They made a lot of sacrifices when I was growing up and still now, so it was an incredibly proud moment.

“When you get a taste of something like that, you obviously want to have it again knowing that it is probably not my time right now, with the guys they’ve got picked but if I keep chipping away and scoring runs you never know when the next one could come.

“If you are outscoring people in the County Championship or the Blast and putting in performances, winning games when it matters, scoring runs when it matters, then people will always take notice.”

Cricketers around the country are gearing up for the Vitality County Championship which gets under way on Friday.

Here, the PA news agency takes a look at five players who could make their mark this season.

Josh Hull (Leicestershire)

A 6ft 7in left-arm seamer who has his sights set on being England’s version of Mitchell Starc. Hull may need to add a bit more pace to his weaponry but he can swing the ball and, at 19, has plenty of time on his side. Hull has made only 20 professional appearances but already shown an appetite for the big occasion after defending eight in the last over of the 2023 One-Day Cup final as Leicestershire upset Hampshire. Hull will miss the first couple of red-ball rounds this month because of injury but, fitness permitting, he can enhance a burgeoning reputation that has already attracted admiring glances from England director of men’s cricket Rob Key.

Gus Atkinson (Surrey)

The only individual included in every England squad this winter, Atkinson was sparingly used in the white-ball matches before Christmas and not at all in the 4-1 Test series defeat in India recently. Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum liked what they saw, though, and indicated the fast bowler will likely be given a go this summer. With England’s emphasis on those who can operate in the high 80mph bracket, Atkinson fits the bill. After withdrawing from the Indian Premier League, Atkinson can elbow his way into England’s plans with some starring roles for Surrey in the early part of the season.

Josh de Caires (Middlesex)

Started last season with designs on a top-order role before finishing the campaign as an off-spinning all-rounder. The son of former England captain Michael Atherton, De Caires followed up a seven-for against Hampshire with an eight-wicket haul versus Essex. It may be these two performances become outliers as the 21-year-old’s career progresses but England are always on the lookout for promising spinners, even if the cupboard appears to be more stocked than usual.

Tawanda Muyeye (Kent)

Arrived in the United Kingdom as an asylum seeker after he and his family fled their native Zimbabwe, Muyeye has one of county cricket’s more interesting backstories. He is also one of the most precocious and eye-catching talents on the circuit and a video of him batting on social media earned praise from Kevin Pietersen. With an attacking verve ready-made for Bazball – Muyeye has expressed an interest in playing for England – the 23-year-old may need to become more consistent to get his wish but he bolstered his reputation with a breakout 179 against Northamptonshire last June.

Ollie Robinson (Durham)

With scrutiny on whether Jonny Bairstow or Ben Foakes will take the gloves for England this summer, there is a very real possibility Robinson will swoop in and leave them both surplus to requirements. Robinson averaged 58.18 at a jaw-dropping strike-rate of 88.66 in Durham’s promotion last season and is more than adept behind the stumps. The 25-year-old made a couple of counter-attacking 80s in England Lions’ unofficial Tests against India A and higher honours may beckon this summer. It is therefore feasible England could have two Ollie Robinsons in their ranks – remarkably they share the same birthday although Durham’s wicketkeeper-batter is five years older than the 20-cap seam bowler.

Surrey have retained their LV= Insurance County Championship title as Essex’s slim hopes ended after their batters collapsed in a heap against Northamptonshire.

A 20-point gap between the top two Division One teams heading into the final round meant Surrey needed just five points in their fixture against Hampshire to celebrate a 21st championship triumph.

They secured three bowling bonus points at the Ageas Bowl but none with the bat, which opened the door for Essex, who needed to amass a 400-plus score in 110 overs to have any chance of catching Surrey.

But Essex were unable to claim the maximum amount of batting bonus points as they capitulated to 211 all out on Thursday morning, with last man Jamie Porter bowled by Tom Taylor to crown Surrey champions.

Surrey, who have won the championship five times since the turn of the century, became the first side since Yorkshire in 2014 and 2015 to claim back-to-back titles.

West Indies pacer Kemar Roach took four wickets in the first innings to help Surrey have a 109-run lead over Warwickshire at stumps on day two of their County Championship fixture at the Kia Oval on Monday.

Roach grabbed figures of 4-64 from 13 overs to help restrict Warwickshire to 161 all out in 44.3 overs replying to Surrey’s first innings total of 396.

Michael Burgess led the way for Warwickshire with 54 while West Indies Test captain Kraigg Brathwaite made 16.

Roach’s new ball partner, Daniel Worrall, provided excellent support with 3-34 from 12 overs while Tom Lawes took 2-27 off 6.3 overs.

At stumps on day two, Warwickshire were 126-7 off 33 overs following on. Dan Mousley ended the day 60* off 70 balls. Kraigg Brathwaite followed up his first innings 16 with nine.

Worrall (3-17 from seven) and Jordan Clark (3-22 from six) have done most of the damage so far in the second innings.

Scores: Surrey 396 off 109.4 overs (Ben Foakes 125, Cameron Steel 71, Dom Sibley 65, Jamie Smith 60)

Warwickshire 161 off 44.3 overs (Michael Burgess 54, Kemar Roach 4-64, Daniel Worrall 3-34) & 126-7 off 33 overs (Dan Mousley 60*, Daniel Worrall 3-17, Jordan Clark 3-22)

Tom Latham and Will Jacks were both dismissed for 99 as leaders Surrey built a first-innings lead of 198 on the second day of their LV= Insurance County Championship match with Somerset at Taunton.

New Zealand’s Latham and Jacks fell just short of centuries as Surrey made 368 all out on a rain-shortened day in response to Somerset’s first-innings total of 170 all out. The hosts’ seamer Matt Henry finished with six for 80.

Surrey began the day on 138 for four, 32 runs behind, with Latham on 67 and Jacks on 13.

Nick Gubbins gave Hampshire a sniff of saving their fixture with Essex as they lead by 73 runs with four second-innings wickets remaining at the Ageas Bowl.

Hampshire looked on the brink of a fourth defeat of the season, which would have all but ended their title hopes, having given up a 49-run first-innings lead and lost four second-innings wickets before wiping out the deficit.

Jamie Porter was the main architect of their destruction with another three wickets to go with his first innings five for 37, but Gubbins made 44 – the highest individual score of the match so far – as Hampshire were 122 for six at the close.

Middlesex’s first-day charge towards victory over Warwickshire was slowed first by stubborn batting and then by bad weather on the second day at Edgbaston.

After a frenetic opening day of 312 runs for 22 wickets, Warwickshire, bowled out for 60 on the first morning, closed the second day on 189 for four in their second innings, leading by 50.

Sam Hain and Dan Mousley dug in to add 110 in 45 overs, hitting 66 not out and 58 respectively, as Warwickshire clawed their way back into the game, but Middlesex remain very strongly placed.

An unbeaten 61 by opener Luke Wells helped Lancashire have the best of a rain-affected second day against Northamptonshire at Emirates Old Trafford.

When the wet weather brought an early end to play, the home side were 121 for one in reply to Northamptonshire’s 342 after the visitors had begun the day on 302 for five.

Northamptonshire’s lower order squandered their first-day advantage, losing their last five wickets for 40 runs in less than 80 minutes’ play – the final four of them to the spinners, Jack Morley and Tom Hartley, for 13 runs in 28 balls.

Injury-kit Kent finished on 102 for two in reply to Nottinghamshire’s 350 all out on another rain-hit second day at Trent Bridge.

After Ben Slater’s opening-day century, wicketkeeper Tom Moores made 94 as Nottinghamshire secured three batting points – 20-year-old Jas Singh finishing with four for 87 as Kent collected three for bowling.

Division Two leaders Durham trail Yorkshire by 234 runs with nine first-innings wickets remaining after the second day in Scarborough.

Durham responded to the hosts’ commanding first-innings total of 340 by reaching 106 for one from 33 overs with former Yorkshire opener Alex Lees unbeaten on 65.

Yorkshire advanced from 142 for two overnight thanks to Adam Lyth’s 111 off 188 balls and Jordan Thompson’s 54 off 52 deliveries, including four fours and as many sixes.

Derbyshire reached 95 without loss to trail by 426 runs in reply to Glamorgan’s first-innings total of 521 for eight declared.

Luis Reece (52 not out) and Harry Came (37no) shared an unbroken opening stand in 40 overs before rain prevented any play after tea.

In Cheltenham, Worcestershire fought back from 182 for seven to end the first day on 265 for seven against Gloucestershire.

Brett D’Oliveira (53no), Gareth Roderick (53) and Matthew Waite (64) contributed half-centuries as wickets fell regularly, with the former sharing an unbroken partnership of 83 with Josh Baker (40no).

Jamie Smith plundered a century as LV= Insurance County Championship leaders Surrey made Middlesex toil at Lord’s.

Smith was still there at the close on 120 alongside Jordan Clark on 34, with the visitors having reached 312 for five despite losing opener Dom Sibley for just three.

Tom Helm’s three for 86 helped to peg back some ground, but Surrey left the field the happier.

Former England captain Sir Alastair Cook hit an unbeaten 64 as Essex closed to within 101 of Kent with 10 wickets in hand after an eventful opening day at Chelmsford.

Jamie Porter and Sam Cook took three wickets each as the visitors, who elected to bat, were skittled out for just 207 in 59 overs, with opener Ben Compton’s 47 the most notable contribution.

Cook and Nick Browne got Essex’s reply off to a strong start to reach the close at 106 without loss.

George Balderson and Tom Bailey mounted a rearguard action against Warwickshire to edge Lancashire towards 300 with an unbeaten eighth-wicket partnership of 145.

Number seven Balderson reached stumps six runs short of a century with number nine Bailey 75 not out to help the visitors to 295 for seven.

Nottinghamshire will resume against Hampshire trailing by 79 runs with five wickets in hand after an eventful day at Trent Bridge.

Brett Hutton, Dane Paterson and Lyndon James each took three wickets as the visitors were bowled out for 166.

However, Ian Holland claimed four for 19 in eight overs to reduce Nottinghamshire to 87 for five.

Northamptonshire seamer Jack White’s five-wicket haul could not prevent Somerset reaching the 350 mark.

White claimed five for 77 at the County Ground as the visitors were eventually dismissed for 351 with opener Sean Dickson top-scoring with 70 and George Bartlett making 55.

In Division Two, Derbyshire wicketkeeper Brooke Guest frustrated leaders Durham with a career-best 145 not out as the home side ended day one 317 for six after being put in.

Number three Guest hit 22 fours in an unbeaten 257-ball stay and put on 118 for the third wicket with Wayne Madsen, who made 62, before Durham skipper Scott Borthwick took two late wickets to edge his side back into it.

England spinner Rehan Ahmed provided some much-needed resistance as Leicestershire attempted to avoid a significant first-innings deficit against Worcestershire at Oakham.

Ahmed made 25 not out as the home side slumped to 88 for eight in response to the visitors’ total of just 178.

Matt Salisbury and Wiaan Mulder both took three Worcestershire wickets, but Dillon Pennington matched the feat at a cost of just 24 runs as the hosts crumbled.

Yorkshire’s Matthew Fisher took four for 53 as Sussex were reduced to 120 for six on a rain-affected day at Headingley.

Fynn Hudson-Prentice and Nathan McAndrew ended a day on which only 42 overs were bowled unbeaten on 29 and 25 respectively.

County Championship holders Surrey suffered their first home defeat in 19 first-class matches as Lancashire completed a 123-run victory in just 45 minutes on day four at the Kia Oval.

Will Williams picked up four for 13 in just 4.3 overs on the final morning as Surrey were routed for 84, while Tom Bailey finished with five for 48.

The pair took only 9.3 overs to claim Surrey’s last five second-innings wickets to end a run of first-class games at the Oval in which the Division One leaders have won 12 and drawn the other six.

Kent’s spinners finally overcame a late flourish from the Northamptonshire tail to wrap up an innings victory at Wantage Road and climb to eighth in the table.

Joe Denly claimed four wickets and Hamid Qadri three as the home side were bowled out for 369 despite an entertaining ninth-wicket stand of 70 between Ben Sanderson and Jack White.

In Division Two, a magnificent unbeaten century by Peter Handscomb led a successful rearguard action as Leicestershire secured a draw with leaders Durham.

The Australian wicketkeeper-batter finished on 136 not out before bad light ended the contest with the visitors two wickets away from victory with 10 overs left in the match.

Leicestershire, who moved up to second, ended the match on 259 for eight chasing 439, with Durham having earlier declared at 343 for four after Alex Lees (145) and David Bedingham (145 not out) had shared a 243-run stand for the third wicket.

Sussex’s last-wicket pairing of Oli Carter and Henry Shipley survived over 20 overs to frustrate Glamorgan and eke out a draw in Cardiff.

The visitors finished on 273 for nine, 85 runs behind, with Carter on 55 not out after being dropped from two difficult chances, and number 11 Shipley unbeaten on eight.

Worcestershire centurion Gareth Roderick and Ed Pollock batted through sizeable chunks of the final day to thwart Derbyshire’s push for their first victory of the campaign.

Roderick battled away for five-and-a-quarter hours to make 123, while Pollock played a knock based on determined defence to register 56 off 189 balls spanning nearly four hours.

Their efforts were largely responsible for defying the Derbyshire attack as only four wickets fell in the entire day, which started with the hosts resuming on 70 for two needing another 271 just to make their opponents bat again.

Gloucestershire all-rounder Ollie Price completed an excellent maiden first-team century during an otherwise low-key final day at Headingley as their clash with Yorkshire finished in a draw.

Price moved from 97 not out overnight to reach three figures in the day’s first over as the visitors were bowled out for 464 in reply to a first-innings 550 for nine.

He was last man out for 113 off 162 balls to loanee left-arm spinner Dan Moriarty, who finished with five for 139 on his Yorkshire debut.

The home side started their second innings with a lead of 86 and reached 200 for six in the 48th over when rain stopped play at 4.30pm.

Division One leaders Surrey mustered a nervy 70 for four in reply to Lancashire’s 274 during an intriguing opening day of LV= Insurance County Championship action at the Kia Oval.

Rory Burns, Dom Sibley, Tom Latham and Ben Foakes each fell for the reigning champions in the final 20 overs of the day after Lancashire recovered from 119 for five thanks to a lower-order rally which included 56 from Phil Salt.

Four dismissals apiece for Jordan Clark and Sean Abbott looked to have secured first-day honours for Surrey but two wickets from Will Williams and one each for Tom Bailey and Jack Blatherwick turned the contest back towards the visitors.

At Chelmsford, Tom Westley and Dan Lawrence combined for a double-century stand which put Essex firmly in control against second-placed Warwickshire on 391 for seven.

Lawrence, who is on standby for England’s Ashes campaign, registered an immaculate 152 – his second century of the season – during five-and-a-half hours at the crease.

The third-wicket pair put on 227 in 59 overs until Westley dragged Ed Barnard to short midwicket to depart on 114 from 193 balls, while Lawrence was eventually removed by Dom Bess.

Nick Gubbins marked his first appearance against boyhood club Middlesex by grinding them down with an unbeaten 98 as he and centurion Liam Dawson wrestled control for Hampshire at 284 for four.

Gubbins batted for six hours and 262 balls on a dry and flat pitch, while Dawson added 111 not out in four hours.

The pair put on 190 to break a 100-year record for the fifth wicket for Hampshire against Middlesex, beating the 149 scored by Lord Tennyson and Tom Jameson in June 1923.

Brett Hutton claimed a five-wicket haul to help Nottinghamshire trail Somerset by just 18 runs following the opening day at Taunton.

The hosts managed only 163 all out after winning the toss before Ben Slater’s unbeaten 67 helped the visitors to 145 for four.

Kent’s Australia international Wes Agar claimed the second five-wicket haul of his first-class career to restrict bottom club Northamptonshire to a modest 237.

Rob Keogh hit 97 for the hosts, who closed with a lead of 127 runs after Tawanda Muyeye’s unbeaten half-century (58) and 48 not out from Daniel Bell-Drummond helped Kent to 110 for one in 26 overs.

Centuries from Ollie Robinson and Alex Lees put Division Two leaders Durham in a commanding position at 422 for four against third-placed Leicestershire at Grace Road.

Robinson (113 not out) shared an unbroken 221-run fifth-wicket partnership with Graham Clark, who is 15 away from a hundred of his own.

Leicestershire, who are without a head coach after Paul Nixon was placed on gardening leave, were on the back foot following a first-wicket stand of 145 from openers Lees (101) and Michael Jones (78).

Fin Bean and George Hill posted centuries of 114 and 101 respectively to help Yorkshire dominate against Gloucestershire at Headingley.

Opener Bean and Hill shared a stand of 153 for the fourth wicket as the hosts closed on 393 for six from 91 overs.

Anuj Dal took five wickets as bottom-placed Derbyshire put their injury problems in the bowling department behind them to bring about a Worcestershire collapse.

The hosts were dismissed for 237 in 83.3 overs at New Road before Derbyshire lost openers Harry Came and Luis Reece inside 10 overs to close on 32 for two.

Sussex trail Glamorgan by 177 runs with nine wickets remaining of their first innings.

Billy Root’s 66 was the mainstay of Glamorgan’s 242 all out as Sussex all-rounder Nathan McAndrew took four for 58, while off-spinner Jack Carson posted figures of three for 45.

Surrey’s Will Jacks hit five sixes in an over on his way to 96 from 45 balls, but Middlesex replied with a record-breaking chase to win their Vitality Blast clash by seven wickets at The Oval.

The hosts posted a mammoth 252 for seven, but Stephen Eskinazi and Max Holden both hit rapid half-centuries as Middlesex pulled off the highest chase in Blast history and the second highest in T20 matches around the world.

Eskinazi got the innings of to a flyer, hitting 73 from 39 balls, including 90 in just 6.3 overs with opening partner Joe Cracknell, who made 36 off 16.

Holden then took Middlesex over the line with an unbeaten 68 off 35 balls, while Ryan Higgins smacked 48 off 24.

Incredibly, it was Middlesex’s first win in 15 T20 games, stretching back to last summer.

Jacks had earlier shared an extraordinary opening stand of 177 in a mere 12.4 overs with Laurie Evans, whose own contribution was an explosive 37-ball 85.

Harrison Ward’s quick-fire half-century helped Sussex Sharks to a comfortable seven-wicket win over Gloucestershire in Bristol.

The 23-year-old slogged 51 from 27 balls, including five sixes and two fours, with his opening partnership of 83 with Tom Clark proving vital as they reached their target of 141 with 6.4 overs to spare.

A seventh defeat in 11 games put an end to Gloucestershire’s quarter-final hopes as victory for Sussex moved them level on points with their opponents.

Birmingham Bears edged ever closer to the quarter-finals with a narrow four-run win over Yorkshire Vikings as the North Group leaders posted 180 for seven at Headingley.

The Bears secured an eighth win in 11 games as Dan Mousley’s career best four for 28 from four overs limited Yorkshire to 176 for eight, although what looked set to be a comfortable win proved far from it as David Wiese smashed three sixes in the last over.

England’s Ashes hopeful Chris Woakes returned an excellent two for 21 for the Bears, but three defeats on the bounce for the Vikings means they must now win their last two fixtures to keep their Blast hopes alive.

Joe Denly’s ferocious 32-ball 76 against Essex gave Kent Spitfires their fifth straight victory.

Denly passed 5,000 Blast runs with his 39th T20 fifty, sharing a 110 stand with Daniel Bell-Drummond as the Spitfires chased down 184 with nine balls to spare.

Worcestershire Rapids sealed a third successive win with a five-wicket victory over Notts Outlaws at New Road.

The Rapids restricted the Outlaws to 139 for eight and Ed Pollock (38) and Adam Hose (33) took the hosts over the line.

Surrey romped to their highest T20 score at the Kia Oval as they crushed Glamorgan by 81 runs to claim their fifth win in six Vitality Blast South Group games.

After opener Will Jacks top-scored with 69, Curran brothers Sam and Tom put their side in command as they combined to plunder 80 runs from the last 33 deliveries to see Surrey to 238 for five.

The under-strength visitors laboured to 157 for eight in reply but still harbour hopes of reaching the knockout stages of the competition.

Gloucestershire beat Hampshire by eight wickets on the Duckworth/Lewis method to maintain their slim hopes of reaching the knockout stages.

Ben Wells and Ben Charlesworth put on a brilliant third-wicket stand of 55 to see their side home after Ross Whiteley’s 41 off 25 balls had helped Hampshire to a respectable 158 for seven.

Eleven overs were then lost to rain before Wells and Charlesworth combined with 43 and 29 respectively to claim victory with five balls to spare.

Jordan Cox hit an unbeaten 82 off 44 deliveries as Kent Spitfires beat Sussex Sharks by six wickets to claim their fourth Vitality Blast win in a row.

Sussex looked set for an imposing total after Ravi Bopara’s 53 helped them reach 133 for three, but Michael Hogan’s four for 31 helped Kent peg back the hosts to 169 for seven.

Cox cranked up his response by hitting six fours and five sixes as the Spitfires successfully chased down the hosts’ total with eight balls to spare.

Birmingham Bears held on to top spot in the North group after a thrilling two-wicket victory over Durham at Seat Unique Riverside.

Hasan Ali took two for 15 off four overs as Durham struggled to an unconvincing total of 146 for five at the interval.

Alex Davies and Rob Yates fashioned an opening stand of 80 in response but the visitors stalled until Jacob Bethell smashed a six and a four in the final over to steer Birmingham over the line with three balls to spare.

Jos Buttler’s efforts proved in vain as Lancashire Lightning crashed to a seven-wicket defeat against Worcestershire Rapids at New Road.

Buttler rescued his side from 38 for four by smashing 74 off 54 balls but the Lightning were restricted to 164 for eight.

Pat Brown took three wickets and Mitchell Santner followed up with 49 off 27 balls as Worcestershire triumphed with 14 balls remaining.

Leicestershire remain rooted to the bottom of the North Group after falling to a 22-run defeat to Notts Outlaws at Trent Bridge.

Despite restricting the hosts to 165 for eight, Leicestershire struggled in response, with Wiaan Mulder scoring 38 but Steven Mullaney’s three wickets for 18 steered the Outlaws home.

Former Yorkshire T20 captain David Willey returned to haunt his former club as Northamptonshire Steelbacks won by 78 runs at Headingley.

Tom Taylor returned career-best figures of five for 28 as the visitors bowled Yorkshire out for just 102 inside 16 overs, having set a target of 181.

Sam Curran’s five wicket-haul helped Surrey emerge with a 28-run victory in the Vitality Blast South Group top-two clash against Somerset at Taunton.

The visitors posted 195 for nine after losing the toss, Will Jacks smashing 60 off 43 balls and Chris Jordan a blistering 36 not out off just 12.

In reply, Somerset were restricted to 167 for nine, Tom Banton top scoring with 53 and Tom Abell making 39. Curran – who has been made an MBE in the King’s Birthday Honours list – finished with five for 26 as Surrey replaced their opponents in top spot.

Kent scored a record Lord’s T20 total as they beat Middlesex by 13 runs, despite a magnificent century from Max Holden.

Holden led his side’s assault on an improbable target of 229 with a career-best T20 knock of 121 not out from 59 balls to maintain the Seaxes’ hopes of finally breaking their duck in the tournament after eight defeats.

But Kent held on for their second successive win, having posted 228 for three thanks to Daniel Bell-Drummond, who struck 66 from 42 before Joe Denly savaged his former side’s ragged bowling attack with an unbeaten 73 from 37.

Essex made it four wins in a row by beating Glamorgan by four wickets, with academy graduate Feroze Khushi hitting a half-century.

Khushi crashed a 37-ball 61 as Essex comfortably chased down 175, despite losing three early wickets thanks to Jamie McIlroy’s four for 36.

Paul Walter contributed 43, before Daniel Sams (41) and Matt Critchley (16 not out) saw off most the remaining runs with 24 balls to spare.

Oli Carter and Brad Currie were the heroes as Sussex upset defending champions Hampshire at Hove to claim only their third win of the season.

Carter’s 64 helped Sussex to 183 for six, which did not look enough in quick-scoring conditions.

Hampshire subsequently slumped to 24 for four and although Liam Dawson made 59 off 34 balls, Sussex won by six runs, with debutant Currie having taken three wickets as well as producing a stunning catch.

Birmingham Bears moved to the top of the North Group after triumphing by 21 runs in their derby clash against Worcestershire at New Road.

Late hitting from Dan Mousley (49 not out) and Jacob Bethell (32 not out) helped set a challenging target as the visitors reached 196 for five.

Worcestershire captain Brett D’Oliveira then struck his first T20 half century of the season, top scoring with exactly 50, but his side struggled to break free from the Bears’ spinners and finished on 175 for six for a fourth successive loss.

Dawid Malan’s fifth half-century of this competition – a superb 79 off 45 balls – helped Yorkshire to a record-equalling sixth straight T20 win as they chased 196 to beat Leicestershire by eight wickets at Headingley.

Louis Kimber had bludgeoned a career-best unbeaten 59 off 38 to power the Foxes to 195 for five after a mixed start to the innings.

But he was on the losing side as Malan united with Adam Lyth (90 not out), the left-handers sharing a superb club-record opening stand of 158 in 14 overs.

Steven Croft smashed his maiden Blast century to power Lancashire to an imposing 204 for seven and set up a 35-run victory over Northamptonshire at Wantage Road.

Croft clubbed seven sixes and five fours in his 101 and shared a 146-run partnership in 12 overs with Daryl Mitchell (48).

Luke Wood then took three for 39 as the Steelbacks – for whom Tom Taylor and AJ Tye posted 40 and 35 respectively – fell to their sixth defeat of the campaign.

Durham and Derbyshire played out a thrilling tie at Seat Unique Riverside after Falcons batter Haider Ali hit the final ball of the innings for four to earn his team a share of the spoils.

Brydon Carse top scored for Durham with 58 as they posted 178 from their 20 overs. Luis Reece then hit 58 from 47 balls in Derbyshire’s reply, but the home side dragged it back to set up a tense finale as Wayne Parnell claimed three wickets.

Haider then held his nerve from the last ball, finding the boundary on the leg-side to claim a valuable point for his team.

Surrey completed the second-highest successful run chase in County Championship history by reaching 501 to beat Kent.

Dom Sibley’s marathon, unbeaten 140 – from 415 balls and spanning 580 minutes – underpinned a sensational effort from the champions as they eclipsed their previous highest chase of 410 in 2002.

In finishing on 501 for five Surrey achieved the highest winning target in the County Championship since Middlesex chased down 502 to beat Nottinghamshire in 1925.

Ben Foakes (124) also completed a century on the final day while Jordan Clark hit the winning run shortly after tea.

Elsewhere, Sam Cook, Simon Harmer and Jamie Porter helped Essex record a 196-run victory over Somerset.

Fast bowler Cook grabbed two wickets in two deliveries with the new ball before Harmer took two more to claim match figures of eight for 178 and Porter rounded off the tail.

Somerset needed to bat out 151 overs, or reach 466 to win, but they were eventually bowled out for 269 with two sessions to spare.

Lancashire made short work of scoring the 92 runs they required to clinch a six-wicket victory against Hampshire in just over an hour’s play on day four.

An unbeaten 64 by Red Rose captain Dane Vilas steered his side to a first championship win of the season before lunch.

Joe Clarke turned his first red-ball century for 21 months into a maiden double-hundred as Nottinghamshire denied Warwickshire victory.

Thanks to Clarke’s unbeaten 229, spanning eight hours and 38 minutes, Notts clawed back a deficit of 416 on first innings after following on.

In Division Two, Worcestershire fell agonisingly short of their target of 386 in a tense draw with Sussex.

All four results were possible with two deliveries of the match remaining, before Joe Leach needed five off the final ball but a swing and a miss left the visitors stranded on 381 for eight.

Chris Wright and Callum Parkinson took four wickets apiece as Leicestershire dismissed Gloucestershire for 202.

That left the Foxes needing 221 to win and they got home for the loss of five wickets with Rehan Ahmed hitting a rapid 71 and Colin Ackermann making 78 not out.

Yorkshire celebrated a championship victory for the first time in 14 months as they knocked off 65 to beat Derbyshire by three wickets.

Shan Masood’s unbeaten 95 off 112 deliveries and a run-a-ball 41 not out from Dom Bess saw the visitors home after Dawid Malan had fallen to the first ball of the day.

Chris Cooke (134 not out) and Timm van der Gugten (52 not out) batted Glamorgan to a draw at Durham with an unbroken stand of 153.

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