MCC v Durham: Mark Stoneman century keeps champions in hunt

Champion County match, Abu Dhabi

Close, day three of four: Durham 248 & 257 v MCC 282 & 48-2

Match scorecard (external site)

Acting skipper Mark Stoneman made a century for county champions Durham to set up a potentially intriguing finish against the MCC in Abu Dhabi.

Stoneman struck 15 fours in his 115 before being bowled by Andre Adams.

But Gordon Muchall's 56 was the only other significant score as they were all out for 257, with Monty Panesar taking 2-66 for match figures of 7-129.

Set 224 to win, the MCC lost Luis Reece and Sam Robson as they reached 48-2 at the close, with one day to go.

Lancashire's Reece only managed three before being caught behind off seamer Jamie Harrison, who took five wickets in the first innings, and Middlesex batsman Robson was lbw for 17 to leg-spinner Scott Borthwick, who may be one of Panesar's main rivals for an England Test place.

Robson's downfall brought former India star Virender Sehwag to the middle and he struck successive boundaries off Borthwick before ending the day on nine not out, with Kent's Daniel Bell-Drummond on 15.

View from the commentary box

BBC Radio Newcastle's Martin Emmerson:

"Mark Stoneman looked in great form as he scored the first century of the new cricket season. His 115 on a tough wicket in Abu Dhabi included 14 fours.

"But even though Gordon Muchall weighed in with 56, no-one else really got through the teens, meaning Durham's eventual total may not be enough for them to bowl at.

"Chasing 224 to win, the MCC will resume tomorrow on 48-2. Virender Sehwag has nine and even though he is struggling for form at the moment, if he gets going he could make a feast of the run chase.

"It should be an interesting final day, although the weather forecast warns of thunder storms and we have had two small rain delays already."