Petersen, Hameed lead strong reply on featherbed

Lancashire 310 for 4 (Petersen 98, Hameed 89, Procter 54) trail Hampshire 548 for 6 dec

Lancashire batsman Alviro Petersen missed out on his 42nd first-class century by two runs, but frustrated Hampshire at the Ageas Bowl along with his batting partners.

Haseeb Hameed and Luke Procter also collected fifties - with seven players reaching the milestone in the match, which is being played on a flat wicket.

Petersen appeared the most comfortable and free flowing of the milestone makers - on a pitch with few demons but tricky to score on when bowled straight. He offered just a single mistake in his innings, with substitute Joe Weatherley parrying a tricky attempt at backward point when the batsman was on 28.

Petersen moved to fifty in 83 balls, the quickest of all the fifty celebrators, but missed out on his ton when Liam Dawson bowled him two runs short of a deserved bat raise.

Teenage opener Hameed had patiently batted half the day to score a half century for the fifth match in a row - also moving past 1,000 first class runs in just his 15th appearance.

Hameed played a similar role to Will Smith, who had notched a double century in Hampshire's posting of 548, and it was no coincidence he reached 50 in the same amount of balls, 147.

Other than a drop by Mason Crane on the previous evening, he offered little for the bowlers - who toiled away on a pitch offering very little. He added 119 for the second wicket with Procter equally as watchful throughout the 51 over slog.

Procter eventually fell to the final ball before lunch, leg before to Smith for 54 - the batsman kicking the turf in frustration with the hint the ball rattled his inside edge.

Hameed continued his patience and look set for a third hundred of the campaign - but after an 85-run partnership with Petersen was bowled leaving a Gareth Berg in-ducker.

With Petersen putting on 84 with skipper Steven Croft before his wicket, Lancashire concluded the day trailing by just 238 runs. Croft looks set to become the eighth man to pass 50 as he is perfectly set overnight on 41. A positive result is now unlikely, unless manufactured by the promotion chancer visitors or basement side Hampshire, on the final day.

Lancashire 3rd innings Partnerships

1st37SJ CroftH Hameed
2nd10LA ProcterH Hameed
3rd14AN PetersenH Hameed
4th41LS LivingstoneH Hameed