Surrey 537-5 Lancashire 241-6: Surrey scent win to warm Ramprakash

As he buried his frozen hands deep in his trouser pockets here yesterday, jumping about at gully as his finger ends throbbed from the ball he had just stopped, Mark Ramprakash may momentarily have wondered if he was right in the head to turn down the chance to play in the 90-degree heat of India this weekend.

He could have been in Delhi this afternoon, making his debut for Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League, having been offered a two-week stint standing in for Graeme Smith, who has a clashing Twenty20 commitment in South Africa. Instead, he did what he considered to be the honourable thing and stayed with Surrey.

Just as well he still had the warm glow of his 98th career first-class century, along with several layers of clothing, to insulate him against the icy wind. That and the knowledge that, with his help and some benevolent weather today, Surrey can open their season with a win.

Lancashire have not been able to match Surrey's proficiency with the bat, although, in their defence, they have had the worst of conditions.

Under an overcast sky there was more happening for the bowlers, helping Jimmy Ormond, Pedro Collins and Chris Jordan to convince the more sceptical Surrey supporters that they might have a half-decent pace attack after all.

Ormond maintained a testing line outside off stump and kept his discipline even after Paul Horton had hit a couple of juicy cover drives and Mark Butcher, forgivably, had put down Gary Keedy, the nightwatchman, at first slip on 18. Finding some extra bounce, he drew a tickled edge from Horton for Jon Batty to take the catch.

Jordan had Keedy yorked before Chris Schofield, fielding as substitute, ran out Mal Loye, answering Brad Hodge's call for a quick single, with a brilliant throw running in from cover. Suddenly, Lancashire were 117-4.

Hodge and Stuart Law regrouped impressively, adding 92 in 27 overs for the fifth wicket, but then Law, driving too early at a ball from Collins, the former West Indies Test bowler, fell to a fine catch by Ramprakash at mid-off.

Law's demise ushered in Andrew Flintoff, who had proved himself in good order with the ball and now wanted to offer evidence of his well-being with the bat. Three fours off the reel against Jordan – one streaky but two from authentic strokes – looked encouraging but after 23 runs in 22 deliveries he was undone by a doosra from Saqlain Mushtaq, the off spinner.

Bad light and then rain cut the day by 40 overs with Lancashire still 147 short of avoiding the follow-on.

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'
Sarah Lucas is the perfect artist to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale

Flesh in Venice

Sarah Lucas has filled the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale with slinky cats and casts of her female friends' private parts. It makes you proud to be a woman, says Karen Wright
11 best anti-ageing day creams

11 best anti-ageing day creams

Slow down the ageing process with one of these high-performance, hardworking anti-agers
Juventus 2 Real Madrid 1: Five things we learnt, including Iker Casillas is past it and Carlos Tevez remains effective

Juventus vs Real Madrid

Five things we learnt from the Italian's Champions League first leg win over the Spanish giants
Ashes 2015: Test series looks a lost cause for England... whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket

Ashes series looks a lost cause for England...

Whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket, says Stephen Brenkley
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power