Ramprakash flays Gloucestershire for 276

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The Independent Online

Mark Ramprakash may not have fulfilled his potential at international level but he is the undisputed king of the domestic circuit. Gloucestershire were the latest county to suffer yesterday as the Surrey batsman scored an imperious double century at the Oval.

Surrey had reached a mammoth 608 for 7 at the close, a lead of 401 over Gloucestershire, who were 207 all out on day one. Ramprakash was 276 not out, after hitting 32 fours and six sixes off 403 balls - he is just three runs short of his highest first-class score.

Another England man in form yesterday was Andrew Strauss, as Middlesex battled back against Hampshire at the Rose Bowl. Strauss hit an unbeaten 117 to defy Shane Warne, Shaun Udal and Billy Taylor as Middlesex closed day two on 204 for 3, a big improvement on their first-innings total of 98. Earlier, Hampshire had been bowled out for 426, with Nic Pothas hitting a century. Warne picked up one wicket yesterday, bowling another former England man, Ed Smith, for 22, while Udal dismissed Ben Hutton for 20. Taylor went wicketless after his first-day hat-trick heroics.

At Old Trafford yesterday, the England Test hopeful Sajid Mahmood picked up 3 for 71 as Lancashire took control of their match against Kent, who were bowled out for 327, despite Justin Kemp's unbeaten half-century. Lancashire's captain, Mark Chilton, then stroked a superb 118 not out and was ably assisted by Paul Horton's unbeaten 69 as Lancashire closed on 293 for 3, just 34 runs behind.

Lance Klusener's unbeaten 147, and 101 from Bilal Shafayat helped Northamptonshire to 449 all out at Wantage Road against Somerset, who lost Marcus Trescothick for just 12 in their second innings, closing on 23 for 1, still 168 runs behind.