Surrey in struggle to stave off follow-on

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The Independent Online

Vikram Solanki had an impact on a fourth different competition in six days as Worcestershire wriggled out of trouble in their clash with Middlesex at New Road. The 28-year-old opener made an undefeated 82 - mostly with the assistance of Andrew Hall in their ongoing seventh-wicket stand of 116 - and stabilised his county in a recovery from 147 to 263 for 6 on a tricky first-day surface.

Mark Ramprakash provided the only resistance of note on the second day yesterday as Surrey struggled to avoid the follow-on against the First Division leaders Warwickshire at Guildford. Ramprakash hit 138 not out as the hosts reached 307 for 9, replying to Warwickshire's 537, in which Dougie Brown made 106 to add to first-day centuries by Ian Bell and Michael Powell.

Brown's seventh first-class hundred underpinned the Warwickshire total ­ the highest score made at the ground ­ as the visitors tried to bat Surrey out of the game. Surrey's hopes of scoring the 81 runs needed to avoid being asked to bat again rest with Ramprakash and the last man Nayan Doshi.

The innings continued Ramprakash's love affair with the Warwickshire bowling. Before yesterday's knock he had made more than 800 runs against them from his last 10 innings at an average of 134. It was his 69th first-class hundred and his first at Guildford. Unfortunately for Surrey, he got little support from the other batsmen.

Vikram Solanki had an impact on a fourth different competition in six days as Worcestershire wriggled out of trouble in their match with Middlesex at New Road. The 28-year-old opener made an undefeated 82 ­ mostly with the assistance of Andrew Hall in their ongoing seventh-wicket stand of 116 ­ and stabilised his county in a recovery from 147 to 263 for 6 on a tricky first-day surface.

Jon Moss's first Championship century for Derbyshire helped them to a lead of 401 with five wickets standing at the close of the second day against Durham at Chester-le-Street.

The 29-year-old Victorian made 132 not out to end fears that the pitch inspector, David Hughes, might find the surface unsatisfactory after the fall of 17 wickets on the first day as the hosts finished on 297 for 5.

Durham, resuming on 64 for 7, were all out for 91 with the captain Jon Lewis carrying his bat for 35. The medium pacer Mo Sheikh took the last two wickets to finish with a career-best 4 for 9 from 11 overs.

Essex moved on to 85 for 1 in their second innings for an overall lead of 210 runs after dismissing Leicestershire for 197 at Grace Road.

Darren Stevens hit the top score of the day with 50 for the hosts with Darren Robinson (33) and Phil DeFreitas (38) also contributing with the bat, although Darren Gough was the star with 4 for 55.

Ali Cook (55 not out) and Andy Flower (11 not out) moved the score on for the visitors after Will Jefferson was out for 11 with the score on 36.

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