County Championship: Dawid Malan century puts Middlesex in control at New Road
|Specsavers County Championship Division Two, Blackfinch New Road (day two):|
|Middlesex 221 & 195-2: Malan 107*, Gubbins 72*; Leach 2-27|
|Worcestershire 156: Ferguson 37; Helm 5-36|
|Middlesex (4 pts) lead Worcestershire (3 pts) by 260 runs|
Middlesex captain Dawid Malan's superb unbeaten century took the game away from Worcestershire on day two.
The England left-hander scored 107 not out in their second innings as Middlesex reached 195-2, a lead of 260.
Earlier, visiting paceman Tom Helm claimed a career-best 5-36 at New Road to skittle Worcestershire for 156.
Helm added to his two wickets on Monday by removing Tom Fell, Josh Tongue and Ross Whiteley, as the Pears stumbled from their overnight score of 64-3.
Malan, whose second hundred of the season came off just 121 balls, has now made 406 runs in six innings this campaign at an average of more than 100.
Nick Gubbins will resume with the 31-year-old skipper on 72, having so far put on 175 for the third wicket.
Pears skipper Joe Leach told BBC Hereford & Worcester:
"It was a tough day at the office. At the start of the day, we probably felt our noses were just ahead. But it wasn't to be. Tom Helm bowled an outstanding spell, last night and then first thing this morning to knock over the guys who were set.
"We fought as hard as we could at the back end of the innings to try and cut the deficit to as little as possible. But again it was tough having to bowl 51 overs in the final session and it makes it really difficult when you lose momentum.
"We weren't good enough. It's as simple as that. We didn't put the balls in the right areas enough to make it challenging and we paid the price. Our execution has been down so far this game."
Middlesex paceman Tom Helm told BBC Radio London:
"I had a nice bit of rhythm coming from the Diglis End. It didn't really swing much in the air, more off the pitch, which is unusual for me as well but I managed to get them to play a bit more than usual.
"It was great fun. This was better than my other five-for (against Warwickshire in 2017) when most of them were caught at deep point. It was a really good day for the boys and I'm really happy with what I did.
"I was happy to carry on like I bowled on Monday night. The last thing I wanted to do was waste things. I've had some injuries and I'm due a bit of luck. Hopefully I can stay on the park for a while now."