Chopra and Chanderpaul plot title course

Warwickshire 296 for 3 v Hampshire

Varun Chopra and Shivnarine Chanderpaul shared a third-wicket stand of 188 as Warwickshire assumed control of the County Championship Division One title race by reaching 296 for 3 against an abject Hampshire at the Rose Bowl.

Both recorded centuries as Chopra passed three figures for the first time since opening the season with two double hundreds in April while Chanderpaul ended the day unbeaten on 107. Hampshire, meanwhile, looked like a team bereft of ideas and ended the day almost certain to join Yorkshire in Division Two, after a horrible day in the field saw Jimmy Adams' men drop five chances.

The writing was on the wall early for the hosts when a diving Michael Carberry put down Chopra on two at third slip off the bowling of James Tomlinson. The left-armer, though, was rewarded for a probing opening spell shortly afterwards when Ian Westwood fenced at a short, wide delivery and was pouched in the gully by James Vince for just 6 in the sixth over.

New batsmen Will Porterfield was fortunate to survive even to lunch as the left-hander was twice put down, on nought and one respectively. Neither was simple, though, with Vince grassing a ball on the dive in the gully while there was a difficult low return catch offered to Chris Wood.

Hampshire continued to contribute to their own downfall as Porterfield was dropped for a third time by Liam Dawson at second slip off the bowling of Tomlinson - shortly after lunch. The hosts, though, were not made to pay for their error as the Irish skipper was trapped in front of middle and leg by Dimi Mascarenhas the very next over for 28.

For the rest of the afternoon it was complete domination by the visiting batsmen as Chopra and Chanderpaul, on a flat wicket, carefully milked the home side to maintain a steady scoring rate.

Hampshire's abysmal day was summed up when Chanderpaul was given a life on 36 as Carberry again spilled a straightforward opportunity off the bowling of Sean Ervine. It was a drop that was to prove costly as the West Indian twice dispatched Danny Briggs for six either side of tea.

Chopra, on the other hand, was far more watchful and finally brought his century off 234 balls in a little over four and half hours. Chanderpaul remained intent on attacking and quickly caught Chopra, passing three figures in just 157 balls with 14 boundaries.

With the day reaching its final embers there was a mini glimmer of hope as Mascarenhas finally ended Chopra's long innings at the crease, bowling the opener for 109. But the day belonged to Warwickshire, who are now in pole position to capture their first championship title since 2004

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  • Chopra and Chanderpaul plot title course

    Varun Chopra and Shivnarine Chanderpaul shared a third-wicket stand of 188 as Warwickshire assumed control of the County Championship Division One title race

Hampshire 3rd innings Partnerships

1st24JHK AdamsLA Dawson
2nd4JHK AdamsMA Carberry
3rd0MA CarberryJA Tomlinson
4th182ND McKenzieMA Carberry
5th45ND McKenzieJM Vince
6th61ND McKenzieSM Ervine
7th0ND McKenzieMD Bates
8th11ND McKenzieAD Mascarenhas