Smith's seven stuns Essex

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The Independent Online
Mike Smith, the Gloucestershire left-hander, took seven wickets as Essex headed for disaster at Cheltenham. They finally owed their 244 to a fifth- wicket 122-run stand between Nasser Hussain and Ronnie Irani.

Smith's figures were 7 for 70 in 23.4 overs and Gloucestershire finished with 115 for 3 off 32 overs, with Monte Lynch on 54.

Andy Pick spearheaded a Nottinghamshire fightback as they wrested the initiative from Yorkshire at Trent Bridge. Pick produced a three-wicket burst in the afternoon session that was largely responsible for sending Yorkshire tumbling from 154 for 2 to 256 all out.

Hansie Cronje and Gregor MacMillan both hit centuries as Leicestershire accumulated 431 for 7 against a toiling Surrey attack at Grace Road. Cronje stroked a brilliant 163 in five hours with 19 fours and two sixes. It was the South African captain's third Championship century of the season. He and MacMillan, the Oxford University captain, shared a third-wicket partnership of 195 in 37 overs before MacMillan was out for 122.

Colin Wells' first Championship century for Derbyshire gave the home side maximum batting points against Glamorgan. The former Sussex all-rounder batted for a shade over two and a half hours to score 106 before he became one of six victims of off-spinner Robert Croft.

Graeme Hick's 100-mile dash from Old Trafford after his omission from the England team delivered only modest rewards as Worcestershire made 332 against Kent at New Road.

Hick had to wait until after lunch to make his appearance at 105 for 4, then hit five fours and a six before a mistimed pull brought about his dismissal for 34.

Hick's journey from Manchester became more worthwhile later in the day when he held two catches at second slip - both off Phil Newport - as Kent struggled to 30 for 2 in reply.

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