Durham's record ninth-wicket stand

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Simon Brown and David Ligertwood compiled a club-record ninth-wicket stand of 127 to steer Durham to a total of 377 in their Championship game with Surrey at Stockton yesterday.

Although the partnership rescued Durham after they had slipped from 130 without loss to 244 for 8, their haul still looked below par on an easy- paced pitch as Darren Bicknell and Mark Butcher replied with 27 in five overs.

With three players on Test duty, Surrey were happy to fight their way back after Sherwin Campbell and Stewart Hutton shared Durham's first century opening stand of the season.

Left-hander Hutton, deputising for injured skipper Mike Roseberry, made 47 while Campbell looked in prime form as he hit 13 fours in reaching 69 off 115 balls. But when he skied an attempted hook off Martin Bicknell to long leg the rot set in, with Joey Benjamin at one stage taking 4 for 3 in 16 balls.

Brown came in after three wickets had fallen on 244 but cracked 11 boundaries in his 60 before becoming off spinner Richard Pearson's third victim.

Ligertwood underlined his determination to become Durham's regular wicketkeeper by making a career-best 56 against his former county.

Chris Cairns produced an innings of 80 not out to ensure Nottinghamshire did not squander the good work of their openers against Gloucestershire at Trent Bridge.

The New Zealand all-rounder hit eight fours and three sixes in his 104- minute innings to steer the home side to 332 for 5 by the close.

That helped steady their innings after Gloucestershire had hit back well in the afternoon session, claiming four wickets for 87 runs to peg back Nottinghamshire at 218 for 4.

Ashley Metcalfe and Tim Robinson had got the innings off to a brisk start, sharing a first-wicket stand of 155 in 49 overs. Metcalfe, deputising for the injured Paul Pollard, hit 11 fours in his 78 before falling to Courtney Walsh.

Robinson also hit 11 fours in taking 261 minutes to compile his 84, but Nottinghamshire then hit a sticky patch in the afternoon session.

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