Goodwin leads Sussex to the title while Worcestershire win Division Two
Frizzell County Championship Division One
Chris Adams: celebrated Sussex's first Championship with a century
Sussex 614 for 4 dec v Leicestershire 179 and 38 for 2 at Hove
At last the wait for Sussex is over. Twenty minutes after lunch on the second day against Leicestershire, Sussex reached the 300 runs they needed to take the Championship title for the first time in their history. Murray Goodwin, the county's top runscorer this summer, led the way with a masterful 335 not out - the record individual score for Sussex - and he clinched the title in style by smashing Phil DeFreitas past square leg for four to start the celebrations. Play was temporarily interrupted as the Sussex players raced down from the pavilion and onto the pitch to congratulate Goodwin and Chris Adams, who was on 56 at the time and went on to make 102. Then followed a lap of honour in front of a packed Hove crowd, and it was easy to forget that there was a game was still going on. The Leicestershire players didn't mind, though, as they sportingly applauded the jubilant Sussex team. And Goodwin made sure the party kept on rocking with a barrage of boundaries to put Sussex in total command. He thumped a staggering 52 fours and a six, and added 267 with Adams along the way. Tim Ambrose then got in the spirit with an entertaining 82 before Sussex declared on a massive 614 for 4 on the biggest day of their 164-year history. And they still had time to nip out two wickets before the close to put Leicestershire in even deeper trouble. Peter Moores, Sussex's coach, said: "It has been a fantastic season for cricket in this country and it's great for us to finish on top. Mushtaq Ahmed had a great season with over 100 wickets, but there have been too many outstanding performances to mention." More good news for Sussex is that Mushtaq has announced that he is keen to return. "I hope to be back next season. We are having talks and I would like to play for two more seasons," he said. Happy days down by the sea indeed.
Nottinghamshire 376 for 9 dec and 16 for 1 v Lancashire 219 at Trent Bridge
As the inevitable news of Sussex's success filtered through from Hove, Lancashire's heads - and wickets - dropped as they slumped to 219 against Notts. Greg Smith (5 for 51) took the first five wickets to fall, including top-scorer Stuart Law for 51. Kyle Hogg belted a quick 46, including ten fours, but Paul Franks and Stuart MacGill cleaned up the tail as the last four wickets fell for just eight runs. Darren Bicknell and Chris Read reached 16 for 1 by the close, but with Lancashire being foiled and Notts relegated, don't expect too many fireworks for the rest of the match.
Surrey 318 v Essex 464 at The Oval
Andy Flower reminded Essex why were they were so keen to secure his services for the next two years, and as a non-overseas player too, with a majestic unbeaten double-hundred against Surrey. After Flower's stand of 157 with youngster Alistair Cook (84) was broken in the morning session, Flower then added 115 with Mark Pettini, who scored an entertaining 70. Ravi Bopara and James Foster both biffed quick thirties, but once they were out a lower-order collapse threatened to prevent Flower from reaching 200. However, he stepped up a gear as the tail tottered, and ended with 201 not out, including 20 fours, just before Essex were all out for 464.
Kent 594 v Warwickshire 200 for 3 at Canterbury
England's forgotten man Ed Smith scored a career-best 213 as Kent racked up the runs against a bruised and battered Warwickshire attack, Ian Trott excluded. Resuming on 121 not out, Smith collected a further 92 runs and piled on 267 with Matthew Walker (121), who was the first of Trott's eventual seven victims. Trott then removed Geraint Jones and Smith in quick succession and helped himself to another five cheap wickets, ending with a career-best 7 for 39. Replying to Kent's 594, Michael Powell made a good start with 61 before Trott then showed what he could do with the bat, reaching 52 not out with Ian Bell unbeaten on 37 by stumps.
Frizzell County Championship Division Two
Northamptonshire 196 and 379 for 9 dec v Worcestershire 172 for 8 dec at Wantage Road
Worcestershire won Division Two after Ben Smith's cheeky declaration denied Northamptonshire the third bowling point they needed to keep the race for the title alive. The home crowd were unimpressed, and Worcestershire's batsmen left the field to boos as Smith's closure with eight wickets down ended Northants' hopes. Worcestershire were still 24 runs in arrears when Matt Mason was bowled by Graeme Swann in the 14th over of the morning, but that mattered little as Worcestershire took the honours. You can't blame their bowlers for then easing up after their mission was accomplished. Mike Hussey rounded off his lorryload of runs this season with 79, Gerard Brophy hit a sprightly 60, and Swann biffed a run-a-ball 69 as Northants took out their frustration by racing to 379 for 9 declared.
Yorkshire 476 and 4 for 0 v Gloucestershire 344 at Headingley
Yorkshire still hold the edge in their tussle with Gloucestershire for the third promotion spot to Division One. After Matthew Hoggard picked up Craig Spearman for 41, Chris Silverwood (5 for 75) ripped through the top order, including the top-scorer Phil Weston, bowled for 84. But Ian Harvey (70) and Ian Fisher (71) held up Yorkshire's progress before Anthony McGrath finally dismissed both of them to earn Yorkshire a 132-run lead, which had been stretched to 136 by the close.
Durham 247 v Glamorgan 270 and 296 for 4 at Chester-le-Street
Mike Powell and Matthew Maynard put Glamorgan in command against Durham with a rollicking century apiece. After Mike Kasprowicz and Alex Wharf had shot Durham down for 247, and earned themselves a lead of 50, Powell and Maynard clubbed 231 together in double-quick time. Maynard crashed 102 from 98 balls, with 15 fours and three sixes, while Powell walloped an unbeaten 156, which included 30 fours. Glamorgan closed with a lead of 319 with six wickets - and faint hopes of promotion - still standing.
Derbyshire 317 v Hampshire 458 for 6 at Derby
Simon Katich scored his fourth hundred of the season as Hampshire took the upper hand against Derbyshire. Katich hit 19 fours and two sixes in his 122 after Derek Kenway (68) and Jimmy Adams (60) had put on 138 for the first wicket. John Crawley contributed a patient 59 as he and Katich put on 157. James Hamblin, who took six wickets yesterday, then progressed to 61 not out in Hampshire's 458 for 6. The Derbyshire attack, missing Dominic Cork, had another day to forget. Graeme Welch took three wickets, but they cost him 121 runs, while Mohammad Ali and Paul Havell both went for over 100.