Fletcha Middleton the mainstay but Hampshire fail to seize the day

Fletcha Middleton works into the leg side Getty Images

Warwickshire 51 for 2 trail Hampshire 298 (Middleton 74, Dawson 46, Gubbins 44, Hannon-Dalby 3-35) by 247 runs

In-form Hampshire produced a patchy performance with the bat against Warwickshire on the opening day of their Vitality County Championship match at Edgbaston.

James Vince's side arrived in Birmingham seeking a third successive championship win but, having chosen to bat on a good pitch, were bowled out for 298. Only Fletcha Middleton (74 from 135 balls) passed 50 against a seam attack which extracted every ounce of assistance available from the conditions.

Olly Hannon-Dalby was the pick of the bowlers. His first wicket was his 350th in first class cricket and he built pressure in every spell on his way to 16-5-35-3. The Yorkshireman was well-supported by Ed Barnard (three for 61) and Craig Miles (three for 71).

In 12 overs before the close, Warwickshire replied with 51 for two, Kyle Abbott removing both openers in four balls in the penultimate over.

Chris Woakes returned to Warwickshire's team for the first time this season but looked rusty in his new ball spell. It was Hannon-Dalby who delivered the breakthrough with a peach of an outswinger which Toby Albert edged to wicketkeeper Michael Burgess.

That apart, Hampshire advanced solidly through the morning. Middleton raised the 50 with a slashed six over third off Miles, posted his own half-century from 79 balls and then passed 1,000 first-class runs with his next scoring stroke. A frustrating morning for Warwickshire peaked when Nick Gubbins, on 28, cut Will Rhodes through the hands of Sam Hain at second slip.

Middleton and Gubbins added 102 in 30 overs but were uprooted during an aggressive post-lunch spell by Barnard, who was capped before the start of play. Gubbins edged to first slip and Middleton played back to one that kept low and lost his off-stump. When James Vince edged Hannon-Dalby to third slip, a serene 119 for one had become an uneasy 148 for four.

Ben Brown (32, 51) and Liam Dawson (46, 66) stopped the slide with a stand of 61 before Miles struck twice in an over. Brown leg-glanced too fine and was caught by the wicketkeeper and James Fuller lifted carelessly to backward point.

On the first hot day of the championship season, Warwickshire's bowler persisted well, not least Hannon-Dalby who struck for a third time when Dawson played on. Keith Barker (40, 74) batted comfortably against his former team-mates but Barnard's third wicket followed when an outswinger took the edge to end Felix Organ's punchy 26-ball 23.

Woakes, on his 100th first class appearance for Warwickshire, returned to the attack to take the new ball and quickly secured his 365th wicket in those games when Abbott leading-edged to gully. When Barker top-edged a swipe at Miles to fine leg, Hampshire had fallen two short of a third batting point.

Will Rhodes edged the second and third balls of Warwickshire's reply, from Barker, for streaky fours but thereafter the openers were little troubled until they both fell in the dying embers of the day. Rhodes lifted Abbott to cover and three balls later Alex Davies fell to a stunning return catch as the visitors ended a largely trying day with a smile.

Warwickshire 4th innings Partnerships

1st29AL DaviesWMH Rhodes
2nd11DR BriggsWMH Rhodes
3rd44DR BriggsDR Mousley
4th22SR HainDR Mousley
5th6SR HainEG Barnard
6th11SR HainJG Bethell
7th183MGK BurgessSR Hain
8th3CR WoakesSR Hain
9th4CN MilesSR Hain
10th8OJ Hannon-DalbySR Hain