Worcester was the only ground to escape with virtually a full days's play. There, with just four games of the season remaining, the wooden spoon appeared to be on its way to championship newcomers Durham, who have failed to add to their two victories for the season since the departure of Dean Jones and they remain stubbornly rooted at the foot of the table. Worcestershire, who are only two places off the bottom themselves, overhauled Durham's total of 199 with the help of Damian D'Oliveira's 81.
The prospect of a substantial first-innings lead, however, was dimmed when Ian Smith took two wickets in the first four balls after lunch. D'Oliveira had his off- stump removed as he pushed forward shortly before Gavin Haynes was caught behind the wicket for 41.
Worcestershire's subsidence continued as they lost their sixth wicket with the score on 246 when Ian Smith dived forward at cover- point to remove Stuart Lampitt off the bowling of Phil Bainbridge. Wicketkeeper Steve Rhodes and Phil Newport then combined to reverse the sudden decline. On a brighter note for Durham Simon Brown became their first bowler to take 50 first-class wickets when he had David Leatherdale caught by David Graveney.
In Glamorgan's game against Gloucestershire at Swansea heavy rain turned the outfield into a lake and play was abandoned for the day after just a handful of overs. At Bradford, Darren Bicknell and nightwatchman James Boiling added another 30 to their overnight score of nine as Surrey chased Yorkshire's sizeable first innings of 341.
Nor were the skies any brighter at Weston-super-Mare where Hampshire were replying to Somerset's first innings of 370. In the few overs that were possible England's recent recruit Neil Mallender found time to remove Kevan James.
Tony Lewis has announced that he does not intend to stand for re- election as chairman of Glamorgan.