Sam Cook and Simon Harmer struck double blows for Essex before rain washed out play with only 27.5 overs bowled on the opening day of the Specsavers County Championship title decider against Somerset at Taunton.
The home side, needing to win to overtake their opponents and claim the title for the first time, progressed to 75 for four after winning the toss on a worn pitch, James Hildreth making 32 and skipper Tom Abell 24 not out.
Seamer Cook had figures of two for five from 8.5 overs, reward for two probing spells from the Somerset Pavilion End, while off-spinner Harmer bowled 10 overs from the River End, turning the ball from the start and taking two for 24.
Hampshire’s chances of finishing third improved greatly after dominating against Kent.
When bad light stopped play at 5pm, Hampshire had reached 80 for three after 21 overs, having already dismissed the hosts for 147 runs.
Left-armer Keith Barker led the way for Hampshire with five for 48. while Kyle Abbot, fresh from his 17-wicket haul last week, claimed three for 49.
Tom Kohler-Cadmore celebrated his 100th first-class innings with his ninth century as Yorkshire took control against Warwickshire at Edgbaston.
In two sessions before rain wiped out play after tea, Kohler-Cadmore struck an unbeaten 165 out of his side’s excellent foundation of 261 for two.
He added 184 for the second wicket with debutant Tom Loten, who showed an excellent temperament in making 58 from 155 balls.
Borthwick was unbeaten on 109 and Ollie Pope hit 78 not out, the pair having put on an unbroken third-wicket partnership of 176 when play was abandoned at 4.45pm because of rain, after the players had twice earlier left the field for bad light.
Northamptonshire’s prospects of playing in Division One next season were greatly enhanced following a productive first day against promotion rivals Gloucestershire at Bristol.
Steady afternoon rain caused 66.4 overs to be lost, yet there was still time for second-placed Northamptonshire to reduce their hosts to 80 for six and seize control of the match.
A draw in all likelihood will see both teams promoted at the expense of Glamorgan.
Watling was composed throughout the day as he made his half-century in 90 deliveries, with Alex Lees offering support with 45.
Michael Hogan claimed four for 31 before bad light brought play to a close.
Seamer Richard Gleeson picked up season’s best figures of six for 43 as Lancashire bowled Leicestershire out for just 155.
There were also two wickets for leg-spinner Matt Parkinson, including that of his twin brother Callum, before Lancashire closed on two for one.
Half-centuries by Stiaan Van Zyl and Delray Rawlins helped Sussex recover to 150 for five on a rain-shortened first day against Worcestershire.
Sam Robson and Dawid Malan also hit half-centuries as Middlesex built a solid platform of 176 for three on a truncated first day against Derbyshire at Lord’s.
Robson batted fluently for his knock of 93 from 163 balls, sharing a 90-run third-wicket partnership with Malan, who remained undefeated on 51 when bad weather brought proceedings to a premature close.