Warwickshire underlined their county league titles by claiming a four-wicket win over fellow challengers Essex in three days at Edgbaston.
Chris Rushworth exploited useful overload conditions to finish with 4-62, for match numbers of 8-90, while Hasan Ali took 4-48 as Essex were knocked out in their second set for 215.
That left a 100 win target and, with the batting still far from simple, Warwickshire had to work hard to get there, down 100-6, to take the Premier League lead, awaiting the conclusion of the Surrey game. -Middlesex Sunday.
The skills of Rushworth and Hasan, ably backed up in the tailoring department by Oliver Hannon-Dalby and Ed Barnard, were the deciding factor in a quick game that delivered a three-day result despite losing 41 overs to the weather on the first two days.
Essex’s first defeat of the season was a shock after a draw with champions Surrey last week, while Warwickshire’s third victory in five games maintains a strong start after so narrowly avoiding relegation in last September.
After Essex rebounded on the third morning 86-4, still trailing 30, overnight pair Matt Critchley and Michael Pepper took the lead but neither lasted much longer as three wickets are fell in 15 bullets.
Critchley edged Hasan on the first slip, then Rushworth pinned Pepper lbw and had Doug Bracewell brilliantly caught by Sam Hain on the second slip.
Simon Harmer (with 50 steps on 79 balls) and Shane Snater attacked effectively to ensure they had at least something to play for.
But Snater was caught lbw by Hannon-Dalby, and Hasan Ali had Sam Cook caught in the long leg and Jamie Porter caught in the underpants.
Chasing 100 in a minimum of 73 overs, Warwickshire had plenty of time but Alex Davies looked to get the job done quickly and fell lbw to Cook before Yates edged Porter and, when Bracewell produced two superb cutters to eliminate Hain and Will Rhodes in three balls, it was 65-4.
But Ed Barnard came in to hit an unbeaten 23 and, although the dismissal of Dan Mousley and Michael Burgess in successive overs tingled some nerves at home at 91-6, he carried his team home.
Report provided by ECB Reporters Network