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From left: Sam, Tom, Getty Images and Ben Curran Northamptonshire CCC

Sam Curran helped lift England from a miserable 86 for 6 to the relative safety of 246 on Day One of the fourth Test against India, at Ageas Bowl, Southampton. Curran added 81 for the seventh wicket with Moeen Ali and another 63 for the ninth, with Stuart Broad. Curran was last out for a career-best 136-ball 78, trying to slog Ravichandran Ashwin. It has been an unusual series for Curran, who was named Player of the Match in the first Test of the series, at Edgbaston, but was dropped for the third, at Trent Bridge.

But Sam was not the only one from the Curran brethren to shine on Thursday. Tom, three years older to Sam, helped Surrey inch closer to their 19th Championship title (in addition to the shared title, in 1950) and the first since 2002.

The day started with Surrey on 256 for 6 at The Oval with Curran at the crease, on 12. Just like his younger brother, Curran took on the Nottinghamshire bowlers en route a 69-ball 43 as Surrey posted 375, securing all four batting points. Suitably warmed up, Curran took out three of the first four Notts wickets to fall (Morne Morkel got the other) including Kraigg Brathwaite leaving them in tatters at 38 for 4. He returned later for another burst to finish with 5 for 28.

Bowled out for 101, the visitors were asked to bat again, and ended the day on 83 for 2, still 191 in arrears. Surrey, currently on 180 points, are 35 clear of Somerset, the next on the table.

There was a third Curran brother out there as well, making his First-Class debut, for Northamptonshire, who beat Durham comfortably, by 7 wickets, at Chester-le-Street. Opening batting, Ben Curran took first strike in each innings, and the scorecard made interesting reading:

1st innings: Ben Curran c Cameron Steel b Chris Rushworth 11

2nd innings: Ben Curran c Cameron Steel b Chris Rushworth 11

Brief scores:

England 246 (Sam Curran 78; Jasprit Bumrah 3 for 46) lead India 19 for no loss (KL Rahul 11*) by 235 runs.

Surrey 375 (Mark Stoneman 144; Luke Wood 3 for 66) lead Nottinghamshire 101 (Tom Moores 29; Tom Curran 5 for 28, Conor McKerr 3 for 21) and 83 for 2 (Kraigg Brathwaite 39*; Amar Virdi 1 for 6) by 191 runs.

Durham 129 (Stuart Poynter 28; Ben Sanderson 3 for 46, Luke Procter 5 for 33) and 133 (Cameron Steel 50; Ben Sanderson 4 for 34, Richard Gleeson 3 for 26, Nathan Buck 3 for 15) lost to Northamptonshire 198 (Alex Wakely 60; Chris Rushworth 4 for 52, Matt Salisbury 4 for 44) and 65 for 3 (Luke Procter 21; Axar Patel 2 for 18) by 7 wickets.