County Championship: Gordon Muchall puts Durham on top

Gordon Muchall
Durham batsman Gordon Muchall averages 48.66 in the County Championship this season
LV= County Championship Division One, Ageas Bowl (close, day two)
Durham 421: Muchall 145, Richardson 91, Arshad 60
Hampshire 119-3: Carberry 57 not out
Hampshire 2 pts, Durham 4 pts
Match scorecard

Gordon Muchall hit his second County Championship ton of the season to put Durham on top at struggling Hampshire.

Muchall was eventually removed by Liam Dawson for 145 as Durham reached 421 all out, having resumed on 278-6.

Hampshire made a poor start as both Dawson, back from a loan spell at Essex, and Jimmy Adams fell cheaply.

James Vince (19) was dismissed by Ryan Pringle, but Michael Carberry made an unbeaten 57 to help Hampshire to 119-3 before rain ended play for the day.

Muchall's knock put Durham in a strong position to end a run of five defeats in their last six fixtures in all competitions.

After a hard-fought opening day, the visitors dominated the morning session as Muchall brought up his century from 129 balls, while Usman Arshad made 60 out of a stand of 128 before falling to Gareth Berg.

Hampshire fought back after lunch to reduce Durham from 401-7 to 421 all out, as Dawson finished with 3-70 and Jackson Bird 3-105.

However, Chris Rushworth, John Hastings and Ryan Pringle took a wicket apiece for Durham, before Carberry and Will Smith put on 51 to prevent any further damage before the close.

Hampshire coach Dale Benkenstein told BBC Radio Solent:

"I'm really pleased with that last partnership. It's something that we haven't seen in the last few games so even though it's just over 50 they looked under control and there was a little fight there.

"It's happening quite often, so you can't say it's a bad day. Unfortunately this is just where we are with our four-day cricket.

"But I do believe with our batting that we can bat better than we have and if we can show some of that commitment and skill tomorrow and bat most of the day tomorrow, we'll be in a better position."

Durham batsman Gordon Muchall:

"I've been batting well in the last couple of weeks and not been able to get a score.

"I was disappointed with my shot in the second innings against Warwickshire so it was important for me to get a big score this week.

"It was nice to get a decent partnership with Michael Richardson yesterday and then push on today to get 400 which is a couple above par on that wicket.

"Take a few early wickets tomorrow and we will be right in the box seat."