Tom Bailey, the Lancashire fast bowler, celebrated his 60th Specsavers County Championship wicket of the season but late Hampshire wickets decreased the visitor’s hopes of avoiding relegation.
Bailey used seam friendly conditions to his advantage to return figures of four for 57, and move above teammate Graham Onions to the top of the Division One wicket taking charts.
He took the wickets of Jimmy Adams, Sam Northeast, Gareth Berg and Fidel Edwards as Hampshire were bowled out for 187.
For Lancashire to definitely remain in the top tier they need to beat Hampshire, with full bonus points, along with Nottinghamshire losing and taking five or fewer bonus points from their home game with Somerset.
And they started perfectly by electing to bowl with an uncontested toss and claimed the full three bowling points but despite a promising 81-stand between Liam Livingstone and Keaton Jennings, Lancashire’s hunt for batting points is looking difficult.
Skipper Livingstone’s decision to field first paid dividends almost immediately when Joe Weatherley edged the sixth ball of the match to Rob Jones, but the second slip put down the chance.
Seam movement caused Hampshire issues throughout their innings, but the new ball was particularly potent on a dark coloured wicket which always seemed difficult to score on.
Weatherley failed to take his life when he attempted a cut shot off Gleeson close to his body which flicked behind to keeper Alex Davies, before Adams, in his penultimate professional innings, edged to third slip.
James Vince fluently reached 22, with a number of typically eye-catching shots, but fell leg before to Joshua Bohannon.
Opener Oli Soames produced a defensive masterclass and batted out the entire morning session for his first-class best of 29 before he chopped Saqib Mahmood onto his own stumps – giving the 21-year-old his first scalp of the season.
At 101 for four, Hampshire were sitting in a position of promise, but lost 11 for three to crumble.
Liam Dawson played a shot-a-ball to reach 10 before edging Mahmood to first slip.
Ian Holland and Lewis McManus both departed in the same Richard Gleeson over, the former clean bowled by a ball which kept low and the latter caught low down by Keaton Jennings at first slip. Gleeson ended with impressive analysis of three for 34.
Among the post-lunch chaos, Northeast had ticked his way to 42, proving he had grasped the conditions in a 40-run stand with Berg.
But he departed before a deserved half-century when Bailey had him lbw before Berg quickly followed caught at third slip.
Kyle Abbott and Edwards added a useful 24 for the last wicket before the West Indian slogged a slow full toss from Bailey to Livingstone at mid-off.
In reply, Alex Davies and debutant Brooke Guest departed within the opening 10 overs, bowled by Edwards and Abbott respectively, but Jennings stoked the ball around with watchful elegance.
Jennings refused to take unnecessary risks, having been selected for England’s tour of Sri Lanka last week, and scored 48.
He added 83 with Livingstone but was bowled by Holland, before the Australian had night watchman Stephan Parry caught behind three balls later – leaving Lancashire 123 for four and short of much needed and meaningful batting bonus points.
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