George Balderson’s hat-trick leads Lancashire to an impressive two-day win over Essex

George Balderson clinched a hat-trick to end Essex’s hopes of victory in an incredible LV= Insurance County Championship clash at Chelmsford as Lancashire won by 38 runs in two days.

Balderson finished five for 14 from seven overs, helped by Will Williams’ four for 24 as Essex lost their last nine wickets for 31 runs to win 98.

Only two Essex batters reached double figures against the meaningful and incisive bowling of the Lancashire duo, who helped their side to 19 points while the hosts trailed by a paltry three points.

Surrey came a step closer to winning their second title in five years after forcing Yorkshire to continue at the Oval.

The hosts’ relentless close-range attack sent Yorkshire 179 off and when poor light ended the game the visiting side were 89-two and 65-down, with Adam Lyth unbeaten at 36.

Jack Leaning celebrated his second century of the season to bolster Kent’s relegation hopes as they carried Hampshire 378 to victory.

Substitute captain Leaning hit 112 while Kent totaled 269. That meant Hampshire, who had seen Mohammad Abbas take four for 68, needed the fifth-highest chase in their history to remain in the title race, with Surrey most likely picking a win and six bonus points.

Tom Price led a dramatic fight against the Warwickshire fighters in late Gloucestershire.

Warwickshire was sacked for 274 earlier in the day and knocked out the hosts for 255 to build a slim 19 lead in the first innings – thanks largely to an excellent five-for-90 return from Indian off-spinner Jayant Yadav.

But Price produced a red-hot spell with the new ball to remove Dom Sibley, Sam Hain, Will Rhodes and Yadav, while David Payne put Rob Yates in charge as the Bears eventually plummeted to 58 for five, a lead of just 77 .

Craig Overton marked his return to Championship cricket with four wickets when Somerset took control of their game against Northamptonshire at Taunton.

Overton ended the day four to 25 from 13 overs as the hosts reduced their opponents to 184 to six in response to 389.

Division Two leaders Nottinghamshire have been forced to continue and face defeat after dropping 16 wickets on day two of their game against Worcestershire at New Road.

Dillon Pennington and Ed Barnard clinched the honor by four wickets each as Nottinghamshire came out of the bowling for 128 in just 34.2 overs.

It was a similar pattern when Nottinghamshire followed as Ben Gibbon and Matthew Waite on loan reduced them to 66 for five. Just half a century of fighting from Haseeb Hameed denied Worcestershire the prospect of a two-day victory.

Glamorgan captain David Lloyd’s 313 was the highest ever first class score for a Welshman who wasn’t looking to bring his side under control against Derbyshire.

They declared a massive 550 for five, while Derbyshire were eventually reduced to 135 for five, still 415 behind.

Bottom side Leicestershire rebounded from 66 to five to get closer to the first innings of promotion-chasing Middlesex.

Harry Swindells and Tom Scriven, at 67 and 65 respectively, led the winless Leicestershire’s battle as they reached 273 for nine stumps – just 24 runs behind.

Michael Jones (96), Scott Borthwick (82), Nic Maddinson (90) and Chris Benjamin (82) helped Durham to full batting points with a total of 459 declared for seven against Sussex at Chester-le-Street.

Sussex ended the day in deep trouble six to three, still 291 runs short of putting Durham to bat again. George Balderson’s hat-trick leads Lancashire to an impressive two-day win over Essex

Fry Electronics Team

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