Lancs face Middlesex fightback

Petersen - Marathon knock
Petersen - Marathon knock
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Middlesex made a spirited response after Division One leaders Lancashire piled up their biggest total of the season on the second day of the Specsavers County Championship match at Lord’s.

The total of 513 included a marathon 191 from Alviro Petersen, but opener Nick Gubbins led the reply with an unbeaten half-century as Middlesex enjoyed a slow pitch holding few terrors for batsmen.

Gubbins lost Sam Robson after they had posted 50 for the first wicket but Steve Eskinazi helped him take the score to 144 for one at the close.

If Middlesex are to get close to parity they will need someone to match the patience and resilience displayed by Petersen, who batted for six hours and 48 minutes.

The South African, 105 not out overnight, lost Steven Croft (46) when he misjudged a sweep at Ollie Rayner’s first ball of the day after they had put on 128 for the fourth wicket.

Off-spinner Rayner also had Karl Brown (21) well caught at backward square leg before lunch but Petersen and Liam Livingstone accelerated in the afternoon in a stand of 103 in 18 overs.

He struck 10 fours in 58 from 68 balls before holing out trying to clear long-off to give Toby Roland-Jones the first of three wickets in eight balls.

Roland-Jones benefited from a switch to the Nursery End to finally remove Petersen with the delivery after he had been deposited over mid-wicket for the second six of his innings.

Aiming to leg again, he gave the bowler a return catch after 408 minutes at the crease in which he faced 285 balls, hitting 10 fours.

In his next over Roland-Jones trapped Jordan Clarke (three) lbw on the front leg to finish with four for 122.

Rayner also picked up four wickets after wrapping up the innings when Neil Wagner (14) was taken at deep mid-wicket and Kyle Jarvis (14) at long-off as Lancashire lost their last five for 42 in 41 deliveries.

Wagner and Jarvis went unrewarded despite excellent new ball spells and it was 19-year-old leg-spinner Parkinson who made the breakthrough with his eighth ball when Sam Robson (21) edged to slip.

Parkinson, fresh from six wickets on debut against Warwickshire last week, showed impressive control but Gubbins grew in confidence and at stumps was unbeaten on 71 with his team still 367 behind.