County Championship: Howell ton puts Gloucestershire on top
|LV= County Championship Division Two, Cheltenham (close, day three)|
|Gloucestershire 218 & 321: Howell 102, Noema-Barnett 61, Klinger 60; Shreck 5-82|
|Leicestershire 215 & 11-0: Robson 5 not out|
|Leicestershire need 314 more runs to win|
|Gloucestershire 4 pts, Leicestershire 4 pts|
Benny Howell's maiden first-class century put Gloucestershire in a winning position going into the final day against bottom-club Leicestershire.
All-rounder Howell (102) was trapped lbw by Clint McKay (3-93) immediately after bringing up his ton.
Kieran Noema-Barnett (61) hit his first half-century of the season and Michael Klinger (60) helped the home side post 321 in their second innings.
Leicestershire closed on 11-0 chasing a testing 325 to win.
After 22 wickets fell over the first two days, the action was much more attritional on day three in Cheltenham.
Only wicketkeeper Gareth Roderick (19) and Klinger fell up until tea as Howell and Noema-Barnett added 139 for the fifth wicket to move the home side into a healthy lead.
Howell's four-hour knock included 12 fours and one six - his second fifty coming off 47 balls - before he lost concentration and missed a straight one from McKay the delivery after reaching three figures.
Following his dismissal, Gloucestershire chased quick runs in order to have a bowl at the Foxes before the close and were all out for 321, with seamer Charlie Shrek (5-82) starring with the ball.
The visitors safely negotiated a potentially tricky eight-over period before stumps but face a challenge to avoid defeat.