Fired-up Flintoff helps sink Somerset
Mark Stoneman made up for running out Michael Di Venuto in the first over of a rain-hit day at Chester-le-Street by scoring an unbeaten 58 as Durham reached 144 for 3 against Surrey. Stoneman sold his partner down the river in calling him for an impossible run, and as Durham slid to 13 for 3 it appeared that the blunder was going to be very costly. But he put on an unbeaten 131 for the third wicket with Dale Benkenstein, who also finished on 58. Durham were without Liam Plunkett because of a side strain.
Michael Vaughan followed two failures against a university side last week with 19 for Yorkshire against Hampshire at Headingley, edging to third slip on the brink of lunch. Yorkshire slipped to 54 for 3 in seam-friendly conditions but were rescued by a 109-run stand between Jacques Rudolph and Andrew Gale as the cloud dispersed and made batting easier, closing on 270 for 6. Gale ended on 99 not out after surviving a tough caught-and-bowled chance off Chris Tremlett.
Ravi Bopara's second hundred of the season bailed out Essex after they had slumped to 76 for 5 against Derbyshire at Derby. Essex struggled after being put in on a green and damp pitch, Jonathan Clare doing most of the damage with a spell of 3 for 3 in 23 balls. But Bopara and James Middlebrook responded with a stand of 105, and although Middlebrook fell to Rikki Clarke, Bopara, who completed his hundred off 115 deliveries, finished on 136 as Essex closed on 269 for 9.
Fifties from Vikram Solanki and Steve Davies helped Worcestershire to 258 for 7 against Leicestershire at New Road which was hosting a Championship match for the first time since June following last summer's flooding. Leicestershire did not really capitalise on winning the toss despite reducing Worcestershire to 49 for 2. Solanki and Ben Smith then added 96 but from 200 for 4 Jim Allenby took three wickets in ten balls.