Warwickshire title hopes remain in balance, Hampshire set for drop
|LV County Championship Division One, The Rose Bowl|
|Close, day two: Warwickshire 493, Hampshire 57-0|
|Warwicks 3pts, Hants 1pt|
Warwickshire's hopes of winning the County Championship remain in the balance despite making 493 all out.
Shivnarine Chanderpaul was finally dismissed for 171 but the Bears secured only three batting bonus points.
Hampshire, who look certain to be relegated to Division Two, closed 436 runs behind on 57-0.
Warwickshire know victory will guarantee the title, so long as they take six Hampshire wickets within 110 overs of their first innings.
The visitors now have two days to bowl Hampshire out twice and it could be crucial, with Lancashire on top against Somerset.
If Warwickshire fail to beat the home side, Lancashire would pip them to the title with victory over Somerset.
Warwickshire began the day on 296-3 and quickly secured their third batting point but lost their first wicket of the day soon after.
Jim Troughton fell to Dimitri Mascarenhas (3-52) for 12, while Tim Ambrose and Rikki Clarke also went cheaply - two of three wickets for young seamer Chris Wood (3-87).
The 110-over mark arrived with Warwickshire short of 350, meaning a loss of two batting bonus points.
Despite Hampshire's spirited fight-back, Chanderpaul remained a rock at the other end before his 295-ball innings, containing three sixes and 23 fours, was ended by Liam Dawson.
Chris Woakes (62) then helped the visitors post a commanding 493 all out.
Hampshire, knowing they must score at least 344 to avoid the follow-on and even more if they are to secure the win they need, closed on 57 without loss.
CLOSE OF PLAY SUMMARY
BBC Coventry & Warwickshire's Clive Eakin:
"Warwickshire always knew there were going to be twists and turns during the four days at the end of the chase for the title.
"The first day went so well for the Bears, so perhaps we shouldn't have been surprised that the second day didn't go to script. Suddenly it looks even stevens between the Bears and Lancashire.
"While the Red Rose county appear to have a decent chance of beating a Somerset side with nothing obvious to play for, Warwickshire know bowling Hampshire out twice is going to be hard work.
"It may be in their favour that Hampshire had their hopes of avoiding relegation miraculously revived by Worcestershire's collapse at New Road.
"If Warwickshire have to set up a run chase on the final day, the home side will surely go for it. Watch out for more swings of the Championship pendulum over the next couple of days."