COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION ONE, Emirates Ground:
CLOSE OF PLAY, DAY THREE: Durham 288 & 289 v Warwickshire 224 & 111-3
Durham 5 pts, Warwickshire 4 pts
Tahir took 8-114 against champions Durham at Edgbaston last month
Warwickshire will start the final day needing a further 243 for victory at Chester-le-Street as they chase a third County Championship win of the season.
After finishing 65 ahead on first innings, Durham extended that lead by reaching 289 in their second innings, to set a Bears victory target of 354.
Spinner Imran Tahir was the star turn, taking 6-69 to give the Bears hope.
Jim Troughton (38 not out) and 18-year-old Ateeq Javid then rescued their side from 46-3, to reach 111-3 at the close.
Playing his first County Championship game since his debut in this same fixture at the Riverside last season, the diminutive Javid was not afraid to go for his shots.
He was lucky on 24 when Durham brought back Steve Harmison and a mistimed pull lobbed between two fielders but Birmingham-born Javid otherwise looked secure in keeping his side in with a shout of victory.
With rain forecast, Durham had gone for their shots from the start when they resumed on 78 without loss, already leading by 142.
Michael Di Venuto was at his fluent best in his 92, adding 61 runs in 55 balls to his overnight 31 against a seam attack robbed off Andrew Miller by a foot injury.
But leg-spinner Tahir followed up his 8-114 against champions Durham at Edgbaston last month by taking another six wickets.
Most of his wickets were claimed with googlies as the winter signing from Hampshire took his Championship haul for the season to 45.
Durham still had 38 overs to bowl when Warwickshire batted again needing a daunting 354 to win.
And the home side might even have fancied their chances of a three-day win when Harmison struck with the second ball of the innings.
Warwickshire captain Ian Westwood edged low to third slip's left, where Dale Benkenstein dived to hold a fine catch.
But the pitch had eased after favouring the seamers for the first five sessions and makeshift number three Ant Botha settled comfortably, making 33 in a stand of 39 with the struggling Darren Maddy.
A lively burst from Mitch Claydon saw off both men, his extra bounce having Botha caught behind before Maddy, who had made just six in 20 overs, shuffled across his stumps and was lbw.
But the 65-run stand between Troughton and Javid has left this game nicely poised.