Leus Du Plooy and Ryan Higgins steered Middlesex to six-wicket victory over Vitality County Championship Division Two favourites Yorkshire on an absorbing day three at Lord’s.

The pair shared a match-winning stand of 59 just as the hosts were wobbling at 77-3 in pursuit of 158 to win in this low-scoring encounter.

Yorkshire, with Test stars Joe Root, Harry Brook and Shan Masood all in their line-up, were put into bat on the first morning of the game on Friday and struggled.

Middlesex made the most of winning the toss, skittling their visitors for just 159, captain Masood top scoring with 33.

That total seemed perfectly adequate when Yorkshire reduced the home side to 136-7 in reply, dismissing the dangerous du Plooy for 51 while still 23 runs ahead.

But with Joshua de Caires marshalling a willing lower order superbly with a carefully-crafted half-century, Middlesex made 246 all out.

That was harsh on Jordan Thompson, who bowled well to take 5-80 on his return to the side after being dropped for the previous game, a draw at Gloucestershire.

With Masood, Root and Brook all back in the hutch and Yorkshire second innings floundering on 83-5, the game looked over.

But young George Hill stood up in the middle order and was counted, with his brilliant innings of 75, aided by an enterprising 38 from seamer Ben Coad, helping Yorkshire to reach 244.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: George Hill (left) gave Yorkshire a fighting chance with his superb 75 in the away side's second innings at Lord's.George Hill (left) gave Yorkshire a fighting chance with his superb 75 in the away side's second innings at Lord's. (Image: PA.)

That left Middlesex a testing 158 to win, and when Coad dismissed Stoneman three balls into the reply, the visitors’ hopes were raised.

But the other batsmen played sensible, circumspect innings, with a relatively dull chase suiting Middlesex just fine, as they coasted to victory just after tea on the penultimate day.

The defeat leaves title favourites Yorkshire stuttering, after two draws and a defeat from their opening three games.

But the division has been dominated by draws so far, so a win in their next match would send the White Rose soaring back up the table.

That fourth red-ball game of the season comes on home soil, as they entertain Derbyshire at Headingley from Friday.