Dawson's five-wicket haul delays Surrey's title confirmation

Liam Dawson ran through Middlesex Getty Images

Hampshire 219 (Brown 78, Lawes 5-27) and 1 for 0 lead Surrey 207 (Sudharsan 73, Clark 50*, Dawson 5-44) by 13 runs

Liam Dawson moved to 45 LV= Insurance County Championship wickets with his fourth five-wicket haul of the season to delay Surrey's title confirmation.

Left-arm spinner Dawson has had his best batting season since 2015 and best-ever bowling campaign as his 5 for 44 kept Surrey waiting in their quest to squash last contenders Essex.

Sai Sudharsan had led Surrey's batting with an exceptional 73 before Jordan Clark came in and struck 50 not out.

Surrey were eventually bowled out for 207, 93 runs short of winning the crown, and a 12-run deficit to Hampshire, which was increased by one in a truncated 20 balls before bad light ended proceedings for the day.

Surrey needed to get to 300 in 110 overs to make sure they claimed the bonus points required to be confirmed champions for a second year in a row.

They began the day on 47 for 2, replying to Hampshire's 219, and by the time Ryan Patel had hoicked to deep midwicket off Dawson, they had only added 13 more runs in 53 minutes. It would be Patel's last action of the match as Jamie Smith will come in for him for the third innings of the match.

Getting to that 300 mark quickly was clearly not the priority - with winning the match and lifting the trophy on a high prominently mentioned by Tom Lawes the previous evening.

Hampshire's tidy bowling didn't help the run rate, neither did Ben Foakes taking 36 balls to get off the mark and even then, it was only a misfield that helped him move from a blob. He never would look comfortable at the crease, although was perhaps unlucky to be given out lbw going back to Dawson.

Sudharsan was by no means lucid in his batting, but his classical style was pleasant on the eyes and accumulated runs at a workmanlike tempo.

The 21-year-old is one to watch in world cricket having struck a stunning 96 in the IPL final early this year, to go with two centuries in nine previous first-class matches.

His defence was solid, but his coup de gras was his varied shot-making, with proficiency shown on the drive, sweep and wristiness.

Sudharsan reached his maiden Championship fifty in exactly 100 balls. He had been joined by Will Jacks - who had replaced five-wicket haul celebrator Lawes after returning from England duty - and the rate of scoring increased for a short period.

Jacks twice took on Ian Holland's medium pace and twice dispatched the ball over the ropes, which helped the morning scoring to 67 runs.

Sudharsan was the victim of big bounce out of the footholds from Dawson, as the Indian gloved to short leg, with Jacks leg before to James Fuller in the following over.

Dawson picked up his fourth when Cam Steel was lbw and Holland bowled a swinging Jamie Overton.

Clark belligerently scored a 75-ball half-century, his 21st in first-class cricket, as he put in 32 with Kemar Roach before the West Indian was caught at first slip with the second new ball.

Clark also scored all 15 runs with Dan Worrall at the other end, before the Australian-born seamer was bowled by Dawson - his 17th wicket in September.

Surrey's failure to reach 300 is not a huge problem in their pursuit of glory. Essex are stuttering against Northamptonshire and if they don't reach 400, Surrey will automatically be champions.

Despite 18 overs still remaining, only 20 balls were bowled and a single run scored as bad light prevented Hampshire from really getting their second innings moving under lights.

Surrey 4th innings Partnerships

1st12RJ BurnsDP Sibley
2nd9RJ BurnsJL Smith
3rd33RJ BurnsB Sai Sudharsan
4th12BT FoakesB Sai Sudharsan
5th30WG JacksB Sai Sudharsan
6th5CT SteelB Sai Sudharsan
7th13J ClarkB Sai Sudharsan
8th11J OvertonB Sai Sudharsan
9th1KAJ RoachB Sai Sudharsan
10th6DJ WorrallB Sai Sudharsan