Mushtaq and Lehmann star
While the actions off the field took most of the attention (click here for more), Sussex fought hard to stay in their clash against Nottinghamshire after their batting failure on the first day. Mushtaq Ahmed, at the centre of the incident with Chris Read, finished with six wickets while Rana Naved-ul-Hasan claimed three to take his season tally to 20. Mark Ealham, though, extended Notts' lead to 86 with a fighting fifty and an important stand of 68 with Ryan Sidebottom. Sussex lost three crucial wickets before the close, but Carl Hopkinson was unbeaten with a determined half century.
Hampshire continued to control their match against Warwickshire by chipping out five wickets after they'd extended their first innings to 406. James Bruce claimed two early wickets and Dimitri Mascarenhas also chipped in with a pair. Jim Troughton held the innings together, but Warwickshire are still some way short of the follow-on target. John Crawley had earlier fallen four short of a ton when he was trapped lbw by Alex Loudon.
Darren Lehmann launched a superb Yorkshire recovery from 34 for 4 with an outstanding, unbeaten 176 against Kent. He formed a stand of 229 with Craig White, who made 79, and turned the innings around in dramatic style. The century continued Lehmann's productive start to the season and he is now approaching 500 runs in just four Championship matches. After their initial success with the new ball, Kent struggled as Robert Key tried seven bowlers.
Jimmy Maher struck his first century of the season, but Chris Silverwood claimed four wickets as Durham and Middlesex shared the opening day honours at Chester-le-Street. Other than Maher, the Durham top order failed to sparkle and it was left to Phil Mustard to take the innings forward after Maher fell. Mustard added 88 with Ottis Gibson, but Silverwood struck late in the day to keep Middlesex in the match.
Leicestershire piled on the pain for Glamorgan by extending their total beyond 500 in an innings where the run rate only just tipped three an over for 167 overs. Dinesh Mongia could only add 19 to his overnight total but John Sadler reached the seventies, as did Paul Nixon who was accompanied by some solid efforts from the tail. David Masters, removing the dangerous Mark Cosgrove, and Mohammad Asif claimed a wicket each during the final session to keep Glamorgan firmly on the back foot.
Somerset's re-jigged batting order produced a team effort to as Essex had to work hard for wickets at Taunton. James Hildreth struck 57 and Keith Parsons is still there on 78, while only Wes Durston failed to contribute. With Somerset 244 for 6, Essex could have taken the honours, but without Darren Gough they were unable to claim their next breakthrough. Parsons and Peter Trego have so far added 68.
It was a day for the bowlers at Bristol as 14 wickets fell between Gloucestershire and Northamptonshire. Ian Harvey, fit to bowl again, and Carl Greenidge took three apiece as Gloucestershire produced a much improved performance in the field after their abject effort against Surrey last week. Ben Phillips top-scored at No. 8 to highlight Nothamptonshire's failings, but they hit back by dismissing the Gloucestershire top order in the final session.
Graeme Welch played a captain's innings to rescue Derbyshire from 132 for 6 against Worcestershire. He added 103 with James Pipe, who is playing against his former county, after Zaheer Khan had troubled the top order. Khan returned to wrap up the innings and finish with six wickets, his second such haul already this season.