Yorkshire close in on title

Yorkshire's Tim Bresnan on his way to 95 against Notts at Trent Bridg Photo: Simon Cooper/PA Wire
Yorkshire's Tim Bresnan on his way to 95 against Notts at Trent Bridg Photo: Simon Cooper/PA Wire

Gary Ballance and Tim Bresnan both fell just short of centuries as Yorkshire took a step closer to the clinching the LV= County Championship Division One title against Nottinghamshire.

Yorkshire will win their first title since 2001 if they secure victory at Trent Bridge and the visitors moved into a commanding position on day two thanks to a dominant batting display.

Ballance reached 99 before departing lbw to Gary Keedy (five for 163) and Bresnan was caught by Riki Wessels on 95 as Yorkshire declared on 532 for nine.

Notts’ reply got off to a terrible start as Alex Hales, James Taylor and Samit Patel were all out for ducks while Steven Mullaney (nine) also fell to leave the home side 58 for four at stumps. A draw may even be enough for Yorkshire if Warwickshire fail to achieve a maximum-points victory against Northamptonshire, who are already relegated.

That looks unlikely, however, as Jonathan Trott and Sam Hain both scored unbeaten centuries to give Warwickshire a lead of 140 runs with seven wickets remaining. Varun Chopra (53) edged behind shortly after passing his half-century before William Porterfield (46) was caught lbw by James Middlebrook (one for 68).

Those were Northamptonshire’s only wickets of the day, however, as Trott (128 not out) and Hain (148 not out) put together an unbroken partnership of 271 to finish 413 for three at the close.

Sussex seized the advantage over Lancashire as Ed Joyce hit an excellent century at Hove. Having bowled Lancashire out for 320 on the first day, Sussex lost opener Luke Wells for a duck early on but Joyce led his side’s recovery with a brilliant 137.

Chris Nash (67) provided an able accomplice to Joyce, who was eventually caught by Steven Croft at point, while Craig Cachopa also made 50 as Sussex finished the day 341 for seven.