Lewis added just 14 yesterday morning to his overnight score, and Surrey 39 to their lead of 234. This is the seventh time this season Surrey have scored 400 or more - in exactly half their games. Lewis had faced 160 balls when Tim Munton had him leg before, and in his next over Munton removed the other overnight batsman, Martin Bicknell, by way of a magnificent catch from Dominic Ostler, launching himself to his right at second slip. Ostler produced the best cricket of the morning when he clung one-handed to Bicknell's edged drive.
There was time for a neat on-drive from Joey Benjamin before the injured Ali Brown was bowled, but it was with the ball that Benjamin made his impact. Beginning with a burst of three for 3 in 12 balls, he broke the back of the Warwickshire second innings with four for 17 in his first eight overs.
Well though Bicknell bowled, and however many times Lewis treated them to pearly white teeth and tortured expressions, the Warwickshire openers had settled in well by the time Benjamin came on after 14 overs. Three balls later he knocked Andy Moles's middle stump out of the ground.
In Benjamin's next over Michael Powell's senseless slash made Warwickshire 38 for two and had Surrey trooping off to lunch entertaining a win with a day to spare. Lewis dropped Ostler at second slip off Benjamin three balls into the afternoon, but he made enthusiastic amends in Benjamin's third over. It has, after all, been his match, however much Benjamin was threatening to steal the third-day honours.
Wasim Khan was his next victim, ending almost two hours of resistance. Dropped when two at third slip off Bicknell, Khan had been batting for an hour and a half before his only boundary took him from seven to 11. If Warwickshire have been batting like this all season, it's not hard to see why it took Trevor Penney until yesterday to become their first batsman to reach 1,000 runs.
Where Benjamin succeeded - as Bicknell did to finish off the innings - was in bowling a line and length which demanded the batsmen play at him. With unerring accuracy he produced deliveries that cut away late and lifted. Lewis, in contrast, asked too few questions in his opening spell. Not that it mattered. He already had the answers.Reuse content