Browne ton leaves Glamorgan fight for draw
Glamorgan 162 and 110 for 1 require a further 352 to beat Essex 279 and 344 for 4 dec. (Browne 129, Dawson 99)
Glamorgan go into the final day at Chelmsford facing a massive task to avoid their first defeat of the season. After being set a victory target of 462, they reached the close on 110 for 1 but with the pitch starting to offer more encouragement to the spinners, it will need something special to deny their opponents success.
Essex's position of strength owed much to the efforts of Nick Browne and Liam Dawson. They shared in a stand of 237, setting a new record opening partnership for Essex against Glamorgan and they seldom experienced moment of anxiety. Left-hander Browne excelled with some fine driving, a straight six at the expense of offspinner Andrew Salter carrying him to his third century of the summer. He went on to make 129 that also included 20 fours before he was caught behind off legspinner Colin Ingram.
Dawson, on-loan from Hampshire, and thrust into the opener's role because Jaik Mickleburgh was suffering from back spasms, looked set to mark his home debut with a hundred. He had moved to 99 when he pushed a simple return catch to Ingram that brought to an end an innings that was noted for its placement rather than power. His effort contained eight fours and a six and his dismissal arrived soon after Ingram had trapped Tom Westley leg before on his way to final figures of 3 for 90 in 17 overs.
Ravi Bopara was the fourth batsman to depart in the space of 33 runs but Jesse Ryder and Ryan ten Doeschate composed and unbroken stand of 74 in 11 overs before the 344 for 4 declaration left Glamorgan with their daunting mission. Both went aggressively about their business, Ryder's 41 came from 43 balls while ten Doeschate struck 40 from 36 deliveries with the aid of four fours and a six.
Jacques Rudolph and Will Bragg looked comfortable enough against the Essex pace attack when they began Glamorgan's second innings but the introduction of left-arm spinner Dawson proved more of a problem. He soon beat the bat and found the edge before he tempted Bragg into a pull that finished in the hands of ten Doeschate at midwicket to bring to an end an encouraging partnership of 42.
But 18 year-old Aneurin Donald and the experienced Rudolph further success. The teenager was particularly impressive as he seized every opportunity the loose ball as he ended the day with 42 from 68 balls. The more cautious Rudolph will resume in 45 which has so far spanned 95 balls.