Hampshire v Essex: Lawrence looking to build
PUBLISHED: 08:18 21 September 2017
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Essex batsman Dan Lawrence is looking to help the champions build a big enough lead against Hampshire to give themselves something to bowl at on day three of their County Championship clash.
The visitors closed on 208-3 on Wednesday, after being made to follow-on earlier in the day, and Lawrence was unbeaten on 78 alongside Ravi Bopara (52 not out), with their unbroken stand worth 127.
But they have only a slender advantage over the home side in the overall picture, having collapsed to 76 all out in reply to Hampshire’s 254 first time around and Lawrence said: “In the long terms of things we are still only 30-3 so we are not in the best position.
“It was a nice little turnaround from the boys and we are in quite a steady position at the moment.
“If we can push to anything more than about 150 then it gives us half a chance on a wicket that is doing a little bit.
“There is a lot of weather around and a lot of good balls so you never know.
“Me and Ravi had to have a fair bit of luck to survive with the ball nipping about all day.”
South African Kyle Abbott ripped through the Essex line-up in their first innings as they slumped from their overnight 33-5 to 76 all.
Lawrence was one of only three Essex batsmen to reach double figures, with captain Ryan ten Doeschate (26) the top scorer and he added: “Abbott bowled beautifully first innings and second innings.
“It will be important to minimise any damage in the first half an hour or so. If we can get through the first 10 overs of the new ball then we’ll be in a good position, but it isn’t going to be easy.”
Abbott added: “It was great to get out and wrap it all up and to contribute for a 76 all out is pretty cool.
“There was a bit of discussion about the follow on but we felt we had them in such a good position that we had to go again.
“It was nice but it is amazing how things can change so quickly.
“I didn’t go as good after lunch, I felt I lost a bit of rhythm.
“The pitch got a little bit easier to bat on as the day went on and the ball softened up.
“We have been told there were 45 plays and misses between Lawrence and Bopara so hopefully they have used up all their luck for the rest of the batsmen to come.
“The new ball is just around the corner and hopefully those plays and misses will find an edge.”