Alastair Cook maintained his excellent form in the run-up to the Test series against Sri Lanka with a third County Championship hundred of the season © Getty Images
Alastair Cook maintained his excellent form in the run-up to the Test series against Sri Lanka with a third County Championship hundred of the season © Getty Images

England captain Alastair Cook maintained his excellent form in the run-up to the Test series against Sri Lanka with a third County Championship hundred of the season on Monday. Cook’s unbeaten 130 and Tom’s Westley’s innings of 125 helped Second Division leaders Essex to a total of 335 for two at stump son the second day away to Worcestershire at New Road. Left-handed opener Cook’s latest hundred came off 206 balls, including a six and 15 fours. The 31-year-old’s innings followed scores of 105 against Gloucestershire and 127 not out against Sussex. This match is set to be Cook’s final first-class appearance before he returns to England duty for the first of a three-Test home series with Sri Lanka, starting at Yorkshire’s Headingley headquarters in Leeds on May 19. READ: Alastair Cook refuses to wear better designed helmet in County cricket

On the other hand, chasing Hampshire’s 336, Middlesex ended the day at 84 for 3. Yorkshire’s day ended at 170 for 4 as they chase Nottinghamshire’s 261. Lancashire declared their innings at 493 for 9 and Somerset started the chase ending the day at 14 for no loss. Surrey were bowled out for 457 while Durham’s chase went on to 156 for 2 at the end of the day.

Glamorgan start their chase with 16 for 1 on the board after the day as they were trailing by 228 runs. Chasing Derbyshire’s 324, Northamptonshire put up 66 for no loss.

Earlier, Cook hit his first County Championship century since 2014 on Monday as the Essex batsman made a confident start to his preparations for the forthcoming international campaign.