Cricket round-up: One for pitch inspectors as 21 wickets fall in a day

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The Independent Online

A staggering 21 wickets fell at Lord's on day one as the County Championship returned, with first Kent being routed for just 87 – Tim Murtagh the star of the show, taking 5 for 27 – before Middlesex were skittled for 153, Azhar Mahmood taking 6 for 36.

There was still time for Kent to bat a second time, and for Kent captain Rob Key to be out for the second time in the day – dismissed for a golden duck by England paceman Steven Finn. One presumes the pitch inspectors will be taking a particularly keen interest in the strip.

Elsewhere in the Second Division, table-toppers Northamptonshire dominated the first day against Leicestershire at Grace Road. They dismissed the hosts for 168, with Lee Daggett and David Lucas each claiming four wickets, before Stephen Peters hit an unbeaten 76 as Northamptonshire closed 32 runs behind on 136 for 2.

In the top flight, Vikram Solanki's first Championship century for 14 months enabled Worcestershire to take maximum batting points for the first time this season in their clash with relegation rivals Hampshire at New Road.

Daryl Mitchell declared at 403 for eight as soon as Solanki was dismissed for 173, before 36-year-old Alan Richardson unsettled Hampshire with 3 for 52 in two spells until they closed 171 behind on 232 for 7.

Stephen Parry revived Lancashire's hopes of a Friends Life T20 quarter-final place by claiming a competition-best four for 23 to set up a crushing 10-wicket win over Warwickshire at Edgbaston. Parry found a slow pitch to his liking and helped dismiss Warwickshire for 109 – their lowest ever Twenty20 total. Lancashire then romped home thanks to openers Stephen Moore (52 not out) and Tom Smith (58 not out).