Ed Smith keeps Notts in check
Ed Smith's second hundred of the season was the cornerstone of Middlesex's innings against Nottinghamshire, as his side were bowled out for 325 on the opening day. Smith's 128 was more than twice the highest score for the visitors - only Jamie Dalrymple was able to stay with him for a significant amount of time, as they put on a crucial partnership of 149. Andrew Harris was the pick of Nottinghamshire's seamers, taking 4 for 86 from 26 overs. The home side moved safely onto 33 without loss at stumps.
A captain's innings, and a typically gutsy one, from Robert Croft was the only highlight for Glamorgan on day one of their match against Warwickshire. The home side were stumbling on 76 for 6 before Croft arrived at the crease. But partnerships of 40, with Michael Powell, 51 with Darren Thomas and two further contributions with the lower-order ensured a degree of respectability. Croft ended unbeaten on 66. Despite losing their captain, Nick Knight, for 36, Ian Westwood and Jonathan Trott scored freely to put Warwickshire in a strong position at the close, on 165 for 1, trailing by just 74 runs.
A typically bullish middle-order display by Chris Adams and Matt Prior helped Sussex achieve a competitive total, if not a dominating one, of 365 against Gloucestershire. Opting to bat, Carl Hopkinson got Sussex off to a good start with a patient 59. But Gloucester picked up regular wickets - despite the loss of Steve Kirby who was replaced in his fourth over - and none of Sussex's batsmen progressed onto three figures. Prior's 53-ball half-century helped Sussex regain the initiative temporarily, but they will be disappointed to be bowled out against a weakened Gloucestershire attack. Gloucestershire lost Kadeer Ali for three, ending the day on 28 for 1.
Michael Lumb and Phil Jaques both struck centuries for Yorkshire, who fully justified their decision to bat first against Somerset at Taunton. With Caddick removing both openers cheaply, Yorkshire were indebted to Jaques and Lumb who combined brilliantly to put on 117 for the fourth wicket. With Craig White contributing exactly 50, Yorkshire will be delighted with their first day performance. Andy Caddick was the pick of Somerset's bowlers, taking 3 for 87 from 26 tight overs.
Northamptonshire batted woefully against Derbyshire at Northampton, where 14 wickets fell in a day. At one stage, Northants were 27 for 4 before Ben Phillips helped the home side reach 140, in his innings of 48 - by far and away the top score. Ian Hunter was reasonably expensive, taking 4 for 50 from 15 overs, ably supported by Graeme Welch who took three cheaper wickets. Derbyshire's openers, Michael di Venuto and Steve Stubbings, reached 81 before the visitors lost four quick wickets, to dampen an otherwise excellent day for them. They will hope to continue this excellent start as they seek their first, elusive win of the Championship season.