Paul Horton believed a victory target of 336 from 85 overs was not realistic against Essex on the final day of their LV= County Championship fixture at Old Trafford.
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Essex skipper Mark Pettini thought he was tempting the hosts when he declared within the first hour of play on the final morning with his side at 212-5 in their second innings.
Ryan ten Doeschate and Matthew Walker both completed half centuries, while left-arm spinner Simon Kerrigan claimed the only Essex wicket to fall when he had the former caught at long off by Steven Croft for 56 off 57 balls.
But Red Rose openers Luke Sutton and Stephen Moore indicated straightaway that they were not attempting to claim a fourth victory of the season with some watchful play.
Horton, who top scored with 64 as his side reached 177-5 from 83.4 overs, said: “336 in 80-odd overs batting last, we were never going to do that.
“Essex were never going to give us a realistic chase. It was always going to be too much looking at the way the scoring went through the course of the game. It wasn’t an easy scoring sort of wicket.”
Moore, having fully recovered from a bout of sickness on Tuesday’s second day, was the first Red Rose wicket to fall in their second innings when he edged the accurate David Masters behind to James Foster for five in the ninth over.
Sutton and Horton then shared a second wicket partnership of 93 in 40, which all but ensured the draw with Lancashire taking six points into Saturday’s Roses clash with Yorkshire at Headingley.
Ten Doeschate claimed Essex’s second wicket in the latter stages of the afternoon session when Sutton edged behind to Foster for 26 off 155 balls.
Ashwell Prince, in his last innings at Old Trafford this summer, hit three fours and a six in a brisk 29 before he was caught at short leg by Billy Godleman off leg-spinner Danish Kaneria, and then Chris Wright struck twice in three balls.
He had both Horton and Croft caught behind by Foster in the 66th over to leave the score at 144-5, but even three wickets in ten balls was too little too late because Mark Chilton and Glen Chapple safely navigated the remaining overs.
Lancashire sit third in the Division One table behind Nottinghamshire and leaders Yorkshire, and Horton added: “We haven’t lost for 16 games now, so to be able to keep that record intact is quite good. We had a few hiccups at the end, but still managed to get a draw out of it.
“It’s a good starting point if you can become a hard side to beat. If you win some games, which we have, you are going in the right direction.”