Lancashire v Middlesex: Visitors bowled out for 214 on opening day
|LV= County Championship Division One, Emirates Old Trafford|
|Close, day one: Middlesex 214 v Lancashire|
|Lancashire 3pts; Middlesex 1pt|
Lancashire bowled Middlesex out for 214 on the opening day of their Division One relegation decider at Old Trafford.
The Red Rose, who need to win the match and score at least 19 points more than their opponents, reduced Middlesex to 180-9, Joe Denly top-scoring with 38.
But James Harris (27 not out) and Ravi Patel (18) took them beyond 200 to earn a batting bonus point.
It means Lancashire now have to score at least 350 in their first innings to keep their survival hopes alive.
|How points are calculated|
|Batting and bowling bonus points are awarded for runs/wickets in first 110 overs of each first innings|
|200-249: 1 point||3-5 wickets: 1 point|
|250-299: 2 points||6-8 wickets: 2 points|
|300-349: 3 points||9-10 wickets: 3 points|
|350-399: 4 points||Draw: 5 points|
|400+: 5 points||Win: 16|
After Middlesex won the toss and elected to bat, England opener Sam Robson was caught behind by Jos Buttler off Glen Chapple, who finished with 4-55.
Buttler dropped Australia opener Chris Rogers soon after, but the 37-year-old was bowled by Luke Procter (4-50) for 33 as the visitors struggled to build partnerships.
Eoin Morgan (25), Neil Dexter (17) and John Simpson (23) all got starts but failed to go on, leaving Lancashire hopeful of bowling Middlesex out for under 200 and denying them a batting point.
But Harris and Patel shared 34 for the last wicket to ensure Middlesex remain favourites to avoid the drop to Division Two.
Lancashire's vice-captain Paul Horton:
"It is a very good day for us. To bowl any side out after you lose the toss is a really good day.
"It is a little bit disappointing that they managed to get 200 and the batting bonus point.
"We have one last chance to do something incredible on our home ground and try to save our season in four day cricket."
VIEW FROM THE COMMMENTARY BOX
BBC London's Kevin Hand:
"Although Lancashire came out on top of the first day, Middlesex's scramble to a solitary batting point in this match could be decisive.
"If the visitors take maximum bowling points then the hosts must achieve at least 350, giving them four batting points, along with a win from the game to secure safety and send the Lord's-based county down in their place.
"The decision to bat first by Chris Rogers' side was analysed all day and was seen as the wrong decision. The visitors misjudged the pitch as they admitted they did not expect it to swing, seam or bounce as much as it did."