The visitors reduced the home side to 59 for six by lunch and got them all out for 134.
Dan Lawrence got some useful red-ball practice before heading for England duty at The Oval later this week as he helped steer Essex into a commanding position on day one of their LV= County Championship Division Two match against Glamorgan at Sophia Gardens.
Returning to the venue where they had been beaten by five wickets by Glamorgan in the semi-final of the Royal London Cup, Essex reduced the home side to 59 for six by lunch and got them all out for 134. Shane Snater finished with six for 39.
Lawrence, named in the England squad for the fourth Test against India, which begins on Thursday, was 29 not out at stumps and enjoyed an unbeaten partnership of 51 for the third wicket after the visitors had lost Sir Alastair Cook and skipper Tom Westley early in their first-innings reply.
Chris Benjamin made a hundred on his Championship debut and Sam Hain hit his first century in red-ball cricket for over two years as Warwickshire dominated the first day of their Division One game against Lancashire at Old Trafford.
The third-wicket pair shared a partnership of 237 and, though Benjamin fell to Saqib Mahmood for 127, the visitors were still well placed on 259 for three when bad light ended play nine overs early with Hain unbeaten on 113.
The day had begun well for Lancashire when Tom Bailey struck twice in his first three overs, first by having Rob Yates caught at third slip by Rob Jones for four and then by trapping Dom Sibley lbw for three, ending the opener’s first innings since he was dropped by England.
Jack Carson hit a career-best 81 not out to lead a strong fightback by the Sussex lower order against Worcestershire at New Road.
Carson arrived at the wicket with the score at 138 for seven and struck four sixes and nine fours to help Sussex recover to 254 for nine from 79.4 overs when bad light halted play for the day.
He received excellent support from Danial Ibrahim and Henry Crocombe in stands of 45 and 66 to guide the visitors to two batting points.
Robbie White struck his maiden first-class century to rescue Middlesex from a poor start against Derbyshire.
Middlesex stumbled to 14 for three after opting to bat at Lord’s as Derbyshire seamers Sam Conners and Luis Reece made the most of the early movement in overcast conditions.
But White, who had previously passed 50 six times without registering a ton – including 99 against Kent last year – finally achieved that landmark as he led Middlesex’s fightback, hitting an unbeaten 101 to lift them to 218 for five.
Adam Rossington’s unbeaten 66 rescued Northamptonshire as they recovered to end day one on 232 for five at Gloucestershire.
The visitors were reduced to 147 for five before captain Rossington made his fourth half-century of the summer.
He and Harry Gouldstone (32no) took Northamptonshire through to an early close in steady shape, with 25 overs chalked off the day due to bad light.
Joe Clarke led the way with a half-century as Nottinghamshire finished the first day on 282 for six in the match with Somerset at Taunton.
The visitors ran up 282 for six after losing the toss, Clarke making 59 and Liam Patterson-White contributing a belligerent 46 not out.
There were two wickets each for Jack Brooks and Tom Abell as a depleted Somerset seam attack stuck to their task and kept a grip on the scoring rate.
Gary Ballance continued his Ageas Bowl love affair by helping Yorkshire finish an attritional opening day against Hampshire on 197 for six.
Ballance, who has scored more than 1,000 runs at the Southampton venue, including a Test-high 156, registered 42 hard-fought runs in conditions tailor-made for seam bowling to admirably hold the innings together alongside Dom Bess.
Bess hit the last ball of the day for four to be unbeaten on 45 before bad light brought play to a conclusion 10 overs before the scheduled close.
A last-wicket partnership of 68 helped Kent recover from 116 for seven to post a total of 232 before five late wickets put them firmly in control at Leicestershire.
Jack Leaning made an unbeaten 75 and Zak Crawley contributed 50, before Grant Stewart led the Kent attack by claiming two wickets in the final session as the hosts were reduced to 66 for five.