Samit Patel and Graeme Swann have had contrasting times of late. One has seen their England career blast off, and with it the chance to earn a million dollars, while the other is now wondering what role he will be playing this winter. But, back in domestic colours, they joined forces to bowl Nottinghamshire
to a crucial 19-run victory against Middlesex at Lord's
, which lifted them to second with two games remaining. Swann and Patel shared five wickets as Middlesex's run chase fell away after the seamers made early inroads. Swann also impressed with the bat, hitting 33 off 32 balls, in a brisk opening stand alongside Will Jefferson. Middlesex, though, clawed the innings back as they have throughout the season in one-day cricket, but this time their batting let them down and relegation comes even closer.
Durham saw their title hopes washed away at Chester-le-Street when their clash against Lancashire was abandoned in the morning due to a saturated outfield.
Essex will have to wait a little longer to try and secure promotion after an early wash out against Warwickshire at Edgbaston. The point for the no result may already be enough, but there is still the chance they will have to beat Kent - who they have had a great one-day rivalry with this season - in their final game. However, both sides could still be overhauled if Yorkshire win their last two matches.
Leicestershire and Northamptonshire also had to settle for a point each at Grace Road. The visitors are still stuck at the bottom of the table.