Ben Duckett capitalised on an early moment of fortune to record an unbeaten century on the opening day of Nottinghamshire’s LV= Insurance County Championship match against Middlesex.
Ethan Bamber located Duckett’s outside edge but the ball sailed between wicketkeeper and first slip, with the England opener resolute thereafter as he reached his first three-figure score of the season.
Middlesex might have been ruing their decision to field first following a 117-run opening stand in just 27.5 overs between Duckett and Haseeb Hameed, who nicked off for 55 as Bamber had some overdue reward.
Nottinghamshire then slipped to 152 for four but Duckett was a reassuring presence in the middle, guiding his side to 252 for five before bad light at Lord’s brought play to an early end.
Duckett will resume on Friday on 119 not out at a ground where he will almost certainly open the batting for England against Australia in the second Ashes Test in two months’ time.
Elsewhere in Division One, James Anderson was in the wickets early on at Somerset, who fought back against Lancashire at Taunton courtesy of unbeaten hundreds from Tom Abell and teenager James Rew.
Anderson sent openers Sean Dickson and Tom Lammonby back to the pavilion after Lancashire won the toss, with Somerset slipping to 80 for four as 19-year-old Rew walked out to partner his captain Abell.
Rew – born in January 2004, 13 months after Anderson made his international debut – amassed 114 not out and Abell 119no as Somerset ended strongly on 311 for four.
Hampshire closed on 287 for four after being invited to bat first by Northamptonshire at Wantage Road, where Nick Gubbins (125) and James Vince (104no) put on 198.
There were just 42 overs possible at Canterbury due to bad light and later heavy rain, with Essex darting to 164 for one. Nick Browne (54no) and Tom Westley (71) have put on an unbroken 121.
In Division Two, Tom Price had a day to remember, rescuing Gloucestershire from a desperate collapse with his maiden first-class century before taking a hat-trick against Worcestershire at New Road.
Gloucestershire had stumbled to 45 for seven after being inserted when Price walked to the crease but the number nine batter peeled off a 98-ball hundred, thumping four sixes and 12 fours before being ran out, helping his side to 231 all out.
Worcestershire then slipped from 58 without loss to 59 for four, with Price having former Pakistan captain Azhar Ali and fellow middle-order batters Jack Haynes and Brett D’Oliveira caught behind off successive deliveries.
Price also found the edge of Ed Pollock to finish with four for 38 as Worcestershire went to stumps on 118 for seven.
Durham posted 382 for six after losing the toss against Glamorgan at Cardiff, with Michael Jones (69), Scott Borthwick (59), Ollie Robinson (73) and Brydon Carse (53no) all going past their half-centuries.
Tom Alsop top-scored with 95 while Oli Carter’s 60no saw Sussex to 275 for five after opting to bat against Yorkshire at Hove.