A buccaneering tenth-wicket stand of 70 restored Warwickshire’s control after Essex fought back hard on the second day of their captivating LV= Insurance County Championship match at Edgbaston.

Essex closed day two on 86 for four, still trailing by 30, in a mesmeric contest between two potential title-challengers.

After bowling Essex out for 126 on day one, Warwickshire appeared set for only a modest lead when they lost seven wickets in 17 overs to dip to 172 for nine.

The momentum was firmly with Essex’s seamers, led by Doug Bracewell (four for 51), but last pair Hassan Ali (53 not out, 47 balls) and Olly Hannon-Dalby clouted 70 from 69 balls to lift their side to 242.