Somerset wrap up win
6:06pm Tuesday 15th July 2014 in © Press Association 2014
Winless Northamptonshire's battling effort on the final day of their home LV= County Championship Division One clash with Somerset was not enough to save them as they were condemned to a ninth defeat of the season.
The rock-bottom hosts began Tuesday on 108 for five in their second innings and working towards an unlikely-looking victory target of 404.
With four of their order going on to post half-centuries in Kyle Coetzer (54), Adam Rossington (62), David Willey (53) and Andrew Hall (66), their attempt was certainly commendable.
But title-chasing Somerset - for whom Lewis Gregory dismissed two of those batsmen and finished with career-best match figures of 11 for 122 - ultimately managed to complete the job, bowling out their opponents for 351 to seal a 52-run win.
Somerset temporarily moved to the top of Division One following that result, but they were later replaced at the summit by Nottinghamshire, who emerged triumphant from a thrilling finale to their match at Lancashire on day three.
After the home side had gone from 55 for two at the start of play to 205 all out - Harry Gurney taking four for 22 and Luke Fletcher three for 33 - Notts required 170 to win.
It appeared as if they might fail when they stuttered to 119 for seven, with Glen Chapple and Tom Smith, who claimed three wickets each in the innings, causing damage.
The efforts of captain Chris Read (40 not out) proved key as the visitors kept going and with nine of his side's wickets down, it was last man Gurney who eventually hit the winning run.
There was another victory inside three days at Durham, who were thrashed by an innings and 188 runs by Warwickshire.
The hosts - 62 for three in their first innings at the start of the day in reply to 472 - were dismissed for 171 as Keith Barker moved to six for 46 for the match.
And their follow-on effort amounted to just 113, with Barker adding two more wickets for 20, Boyd Rankin claiming three for 16 and Jeetan Patel five for 49.
In Division Two, leaders Worcestershire moved closer to victory over Leicestershire at New Road.
Having resumed on day three on 48 for two in their second innings, the hosts declared on 416 for eight, with top-scorer Tom Kohler-Cadmore having been agonisingly denied a maiden first-class century when he was dismissed on 99.
That set bottom-of-the-table Leicestershire a daunting target of 458, and they closed on 56 for two, Greg Smith unbeaten on 38.
Meanwhile, second-placed Hampshire's match at Essex was looking delicately balanced at the end of day three.
The home side, 70 for one overnight, ended up posting 285 all out in response to the visitors' first-innings 246, with Jesse Ryder (69) and Ravi Bopara (79) making the key contributions.
Hampshire were on 83 for one at stumps and had Michael Carberry at the crease on an unbeaten 48.
The other Division Two action saw Derbyshire enjoy the better of the second day at Gloucestershire, who had Will Gidman make 125 but were bowled out for 356 from an overnight position of 304 for six.
Tom Taylor ended up with five for 58 and Derbyshire then got their first-innings reply under way by reaching 216 for two, Ben Slater hitting 70 and Wayne Madsen and Shivnarine Chanderpaul finishing the day on 79 and 50 not out respectively.