Lehmann saves Yorkshire with another hundred
A superb 172 from Darren Lehmann took Yorkshire to the heights of 302 on the opening day of their encounter against Kent at Headingley. The next highest score was from Anthony McGrath (41) as Simon Cook (5 for 38) ran through the lower order to dismiss Yorkshire for 310. Lehmann was last man out when he fell to Min Patel; in 189 balls he hit 19 fours, clearing the boundary four times, and it was his fifth hundred of the season, taking his haul to 1272 runs in 12 matches. Yorkshire ended the day on top when Deon Kruis removed David Fulton shortly before the close.
Hampshire's Chris Tremlett served up a timely reminder of his abilities, grabbing a six-wicket haul including two in the first over of the match - Ian Westwood and Jonathan Trott, both clean bowled. That left Warwickshire reeling at the Rose Bowl. But Mark Wagh came to their rescue with a superb 128, his second and highest century of the season. He added 173 for the third wicket with Nick Knight, who made 78, as Hampshire struggled for further inspiration in the absence of their captain, Shane Warne. Tremlett, however, was not to be denied, and returned with more wickets in his second spell, as Knight fell lbw and Alex Loudon was caught behind for 10.
Andrew Caddick top scored for Somerset with a typically boisterous 68 to frustrate Glamorgan on the opening day at Taunton. After Huw Waters continued his impressive form, picking up five Somerset batsmen to leave them reeling on 227 for 8, Caddick set about the recovery to take his side to 330. He cracked nine fours and two sixes in a 10th-wicket partnership spanning 44 minutes with Charl Willoughby worth 67. In reply, Glamorgan set off in a hurry with Gareth Rees and, in particular Mark Cosgrove, belting the Somerset bowling with an opening stand of 101. Willoughby and Caddick hit back, though, to remove both openers before stumps.
Sussex are on course for a big total on the first day against Durham at Hove after four of their batsmen made confident half-centuries. None has yet gone on to make a hundred, although Chris Adams remains unbeaten on 92. Richard Montgomerie and Carl Hopkinson stroked the ball around during their 140-run opening partnership before Mick Lewis removed Montgomerie and Michael Yardy in quick succession. Matt Prior batted with his customary forcefulness and pugnacity, crunching several fours as he and Adams went on the attack.
Surrey's batting struggled in the absence of Mark Ramprakash, who was forced to sit out of their trip to Chelmsford for personal reasons and so missed the chance to go for an incredible sixth score of 150-plus in consecutive innings. With Andy Bichel leading the charge, Essex's bowlers tore through the top order, leaving Surrey reeling at 147 for 6, before Ian Salisbury steadied the innings from No. 7 with 74, his best score of the Championship season. He was ably supported by Neil Saker, whose 58 more than doubled his fledgling career tally. Azhar Mahmood ripped out Varun Chopra and Mervyn Westfield shortly before stumps as Essex limped to 32 for 2.
Fresh from their triumph in the Twenty20 Cup, Leicestershire found their return to four-day cricket to be an arduous one, as Worcestershire's Stephen Moore and Steven Davies made them work hard for their wickets at Grace Road. Moore made 97, and was unlucky to miss out on his first century of the season when he was bowled by Claude Henderson. Following the dismissal of Graeme Hick, Worcestershire were 121 for 4, with Stuart Broad having accounted for a possible future England team-mate, Vikram Solanki, for a seventh-ball duck. But Moore and Davies, and later Davies and Gareth Batty turned the innings around with singular resolve.