Curran revives memories in rain-wrecked clash
Surrey 155-3 trail Northamptonshire 309 (Newton 95, Peters 82) by 154 runs
Tom Curran, at 20, made a maiden first-class appearance on the Wantage Road ground where his father Kevin played for eight seasons in Northamptonshire colours during the 1990s - and he made good use of it in a bedraggled match heading for a draw.
Curran's skiddy approach, bearing some similarity in action to his father, dismissed the industrious Stephen Peters and Rob Keogh before lunch in a match that had lost 164 overs to rain on the first two days.
Peters, 64 not out, had missed his century and so too did Rob Newton. He begun brightly - dismissing Curran down the ground effortlessly off the second ball of the day - but rode his luck, too, driving over the slip cordon and skying a hook in between fielders.
His fifty - the third in the Championship - came off 67 balls, but he fell five runs short of three figures, fifteen minutes after lunch.
When Adam Rossington and Josh Cobb added 50 for the sixth wicket, serenity was restored but carnage was soon to descend in the most unthreatening of circumstances after Cobb drove to Batty from Ansari's left arm spin. David Willey was bowled the very next ball while Steven Crook fell at deep mid-wicket in the following over from Batty, without adding a run himself.
With Olly Stone dismissed cheaply too, Rossington could be forgiven for feeling bemused at the other end. He reached 50 off 69 balls and took out his frustrations with a huge blow for 6 down the ground off Ansari which almost took out the windows on the top tier of the Spencer Pavilion.
When Rossington chipped back to Ansari for 58, Northamptonshire had lost their last five wickets for 21 and their last seven for 96 - and could only blame themselves.
Ansari and Rory Burns showed how the placid pitch was really playing when they opened the Surrey innings and guided them to an uneventful 89 without loss. But Ansari's edge produced an athletic catch from behind the stumps from Rossington off Mohammed Azharullah and two further wickets quickly followed.
The accumulation of bonus points seems likely to be the only meaningful activity on the final day with a draw all but certain.