THE wickets continued to fall in the County Championship match between Middlesex and Worcestershire on day two.

Worcestershire’s final five wickets of their first innings fell before lunch as they managed to post a lead of just 3 runs after being bowled out for 191, with Ed Barnard top scoring with 69 not-out.

But Dillon Pennington continued to build on his impressive first innings display to take three wickets as Middlesex’ again struggled to deal with the combination of pace and spin from the Worcestershire bowlers.

At the close, Middlesex had reached 180/6 and a lead of 177 heading into day three.

Worcestershire started day two on 100/5 after Ed Barnard and Gareth Roderick provided some late runs on the opening day to salvage the innings after falling to 47/5.

Middlesex’s Tom Helm captured the first wicket of the day after half an hour of play when he had Roderick caught for 23.

Joe Leach came to the crease but did not last more than 10 minutes as he was caught behind for seven runs off the bowling of Tim Murtagh.

Ed Barnard moved onto his half century as the morning progressed and Josh Baker got into his stride quickly.

He raced towards 36 off 50 deliveries before his innings came to an end when caught by Jack Davies off Toby Roland-Jones.

Whilst Barnard was proving a tough nut to crack for the hosts, the final two wickets fell quickly before lunch as Charlie Morris (2) and Dillon Pennington (0) were both dismissed by Roland-Jones.

There were still three overs left in the morning session and Middlesex got through them and were 6/0 at the interval.

Openers Mark Stoneman and Sam Robson settled into an early rhythm as both moved through the gears.

But Pennington continued his impressive performance in the match as he was the bowler who broke the opening partnership.

Stoneman (27) played at a delivery from the big pace bowler and Morris took the catch before Pennington then had Jack Davies caught by Ed Barnard two balls later.

Sam Robson’s (35) innings was halted by Joe Leach, who caught and bowled the opener as Middlesex fell to 78/3.

The wickets continued to fall as Josh baker got in on the act to bowl Max Holden for eight runs.

Middlesex’ lead moved to 107 by tea but there was a swing in momentum after the interval as two wickets in quick succession saw Robbie White (37) and John Simpson (26) removed by Baker and Pennington respectively.

Luke Hollman swatted his way to 32 at the time of print as Middlesex reached 174/6.