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Livingstone's career-best stirs England expectations

Lancashire 484 for 6 (Livingstone 215*, Chanderpaul 95) lead Warwickshire 200 (Patel 47, Jarvis 6-67) by 284 runs

Double centurion Liam Livingstone starred to put second-placed Lancashire on course for a crucial Specsavers County Championship win over Warwickshire at Emirates Old Trafford.

Lancashire have reached the halfway stage of this Division One encounter with the struggling Bears at 484 for 6 from 122 overs in reply to 200.

They lost only three wickets in the day in advancing from 112 for 3 overnight to lead by 284. Bad light ended play seven overs early.

Livingstone has struggled to make an impact since winning England T20 honours earlier this summer, but he batted through the entire day for 215 not out off 318 balls with 25 fours and three sixes.

It was his first career double and was a reminder of the ability that impressed England during a Lions tour of Sri Lanka last winter.

His emphasis, though, remains with Lancashire. "It was good fun," he said. "We've still got work to do tomorrow, but luckily we're in a good position to push for the win over the next two days. Everyone's looking for big performances. It's a big part of the year. We've sort of put ourselves in a good position where we can push and try to win as many games as we can and see where we end up."

Nightwatchman Stephen Parry fell for 43 before lunch and Shiv Chanderpaul and Jos Buttler for 95 and 49 after tea.

West Indian Chanderpaul narrowly missed out on his 77th career first-class century. He shared 202 in 49 overs with fifth-wicket partner Livingstone from mid-morning to early evening.

Left-handed Chanderpaul turned 43 earlier this month, but he shows no signs of slowing up. This 152-ball effort, including eleven fours, came against one of his other three English counties.

This is his second spell with Lancashire, while he also represented Durham and Derbyshire as well as Warwickshire briefly in 2011.

In a season which has only seen the Bears win one Championship match and sit bottom of the table, there can't have been too many more frustrating days than this.

Livingstone and Parry completed a fourth-wicket stand of 85 before lunch, ended when the latter miscued Jeetan Patel's off-spin to mid-on two short of a career best score.

From there, Livingstone, who hit 168 in a win over Somerset here earlier in the summer, and Chanderpaul rarely looked troubled on a pitch which has shown rare signs of uneven bounce.

Livingstone reached his second hundred of the season off 151 balls when he pulled the penultimate ball of the morning from Olly Stone for six over backward square-leg.

Chanderpaul, who started particularly fluently before lunch, fell to the first ball of the evening session's second over when he pulled Wright to Patel at square-leg, leaving the score at 376 for five in the 99th.

That brought Buttler to the crease, and he got off the mark with an inside-edge for four to fine-leg later in the over before lofting Patel for six over long-on shortly afterwards as Lancashire closed in on a fifth batting point.

Buttler survived a straightforward drop on 19 by Matthew Lamb at short mid-wicket off Patel before later falling for 49, caught at deep mid-wicket off Andy Umeed's off-spinners.

Earlier in the over, Livingstone reached 200 off 302 balls. The pair shared 82. Ryan McLaren will begin tomorrow's third day unbeaten on 13.