Div One: Joyce boosts Sussex
A battling century from Sussex captain Ed Joyce frustrated Championship leaders Yorkshire in front of a 4,624 crowd on the first day of the match at the Scarborough Cricket Festival.
Joyce fell to the last ball of the day for 130 from 240 deliveries with 15 fours, leaving Sussex on 315-8 and Yorkshire still have a lot of work to do if they are to extend their five-point lead at the top of the table.
Ryan Sidebottom's took two wickets in four balls to reduce Sussex to 44-2, Chris Nash edging a fast catch to Adam Lyth at second slip and Luke Wells playing defensively only for the ball to bounce back on to his stumps.
Yorkshire were beginning to sense that they had made the right decision in putting their opponents in to bat, but Joyce always looked comfortable against an attack of inconsistent quality.
Sussex director of cricket, Mark Robinson, said: "I am very happy with the way things went after we had been put in to bat and the great partnership between Ed Joyce and Craig Cachopa took the sting out of the attack and was the feature of the day. Ed is an outstanding player who has the capacity to go on. He doesn't bat to his ego and today he was back to his best.
"I had a feeling that to bat first was the right thing to do because the pitch feels a bit crusty and it will be interesting to see if it takes spin later on. The ball has seamed about all day and we knew the importance of getting through the first session."
A fine 84 by Calum MacLeod and an attacking 83 from John Hastings helped Durham stage an impressive fightback against Lancashire to reach 329-8 at stumps on the first day at Old Trafford.
Durham looked in some trouble as they slipped to 82-5 but MacLeod and Hastings joined forces in a 145-run stand for the seventh wickets to help turn the relegation clash around.
Neither player was able to stick around until the close as both were dismissed in the final 10 overs of the day, but by then Ben Stokes had arrived from the Oval after being released from England duty.
The all-rounder will resume on 24 not out on Saturday and will hope to help his side build an even more formidable first-innings total in a game which is being played on Manchester's Test match wicket.
Lancashire's Simon Kerrigan finished with 3-86 from 25 overs but after the success heenjoyed against left-handers in the first session, the spinner was left regretting something of a missed opportunity.
"We're disappointed with how it went," admitted Kerrigan. "We had a real chance at 82 for five and we didn't manage to capitalise on it. It's the Test wicket, there's a bit of rough there and Durham have got a lot of left-handers up the top of their order.
"It's a decent pitch and it's a big first innings for us once we get them out. It could be tricky batting last on that wicket."
Ian Westwood hit his first century for two years to lead Warwickshire to 334-9 on the opening day of the match with Somerset at Taunton.
The opener made the most of being dropped on 24 to score 129 after his side had lost the toss on a green pitch. Rikki Clarke contributed 42 to a sixth-wicket stand of 67, while Richard Jones made 35.
Somerset's bowlers failed to make sufficient use of the new ball at the start of the day. Craig Overton was the pick, taking 3-59 from 19 overs.
Westwood reached his half-century off 74 balls, with nine fours, but Somerset looked to be taking a grip as Sam Hain, on seven, was held at second slip by Marcus Trescothick, flicking at a wide ball fro m Gregory.
Tim Ambrose was dropped on eight by Peter Trego in the slips off the unlucky Thomas, but had added only 10 more when Trego made amends by having him caught behind driving.
At 144-5, Clarke joined Westwood and the pair took the total to 177 off 52 overs at tea.
Clarke hit eight fours in an entertaining 58-ball innings before edging Overton to Trego at first slip.
Westwood continued without frills, moving to a valuable ton by pulling left-arm spinner George Dockrell for a single with the total on 224. He had faced 182 deliveries and extended his boundary count to 14.
Westwood's resistance finally ended in the first over with the second new ball as he was caught at backward point by Tom Abell, making his first-class debut for Somerset, to give Gregory a third wicket.
Adam Rossington and David Willey helped Northamptonshire enjoy one of their better Championship days as they seized the initiative against Nottinghamshire.
Rossington scored 103, his maiden championship hundred, as his side posted 260 all out before Willey picked up three crucial top-order wickets to leave Nottinghamshire's reply in disarray on 38-4 at Wantage Road.
Rossington, 21, on loan from Middlesex, scored his runs from 124 deliveries, hitting 13 fours and two sixes, enabling his new county to recover from a position of 108 for six during the early part of the afternoon session.
Rossington was eventually bowled by Ajmal Shahzad, two deliveries after launching the same bowler high over deep square-leg to move to the second first-class century of his career.
With 18 overs to face at the end of the day Nottinghamshire's innings got off to a dreadful start as Willey bowled Alex Hales and then had Steven Mullaney caught behind in his first over.
Worse was to follow as the visitors were reduced to 25-4 as a misjudgement from James Taylor resulted in him being given out lbw to Mohammad Azharullah before Samit Patel nudged Willey to second slip.