Durham strike back after collapse
Surrey 161 for 7 (Ramprakash 62, Gibson 3-46) trail Durham 232 (Chanderpaul 81, Di Venuto 56) by 71 runs
Durham fought back on the opening day against Surrey to end with the prospect of a first-innings lead at Chester-le-Street. After suffering a collapse of 7 for 51, the home side's bowlers struck as Surrey slumped to 42 for 5. Mark Ramprakash steadied the innings with a half-century, but fell to the final ball of the day to leave Durham on top.
Ramprakash hit 11 boundaries as he passed fifty and James Benning crunched seven fours in a 22-ball 36 as Surrey finally found some momentum with the bat. Ramprakash and Matthew Nicholson added a useful 52, but the final say went to Durham as Liam Plunkett had Ramprakash caught at slip.
There was little sign of the clatter of wickets to come as Michael Di Venuto (56) and Shivnarine Chanderpaul (81) carried Durham to 181 for 3 midway through the afternoon. The vital breakthrough for Surrey came when Stuart Walters trapped Dale Benkenstein lbw and by the time Chanderpaul fell, after facing 166 balls, the innings was in freefall.
Harbhajan Singh continued his impressive form with three wickets, while young seam bowler Chris Jordon also gained a useful haul. Jimmy Ormond, back in the team after a lengthy injury lay-off, bagged two.
However, Surrey found batting a struggle in reply. Scott Newman was run out then Jonathan Batty edged behind off Steve Harmison. Worse was to follow as the ageless Ottis Gibson cut a swathe through the middle as he removed Walters, Mark Butcher and Ali Brown.