Amid extraordinary scenes at the Kia Oval, Essex captain Ryan ten Doeschate's superb 53 not out from 62 balls earned his side a nerve-shredding one-wicket win as champions Surrey just failed to prevent the 2017 championship winners from chasing down a target of 132.
County champions Surrey were skittled for 67, their lowest championship total at the Kia Oval for 56 years, as Jamie Porter and Sam Cook bowled Essex into a position of first-day dominance with four wickets apiece.
Simon Harmer's best figures of the season and Murali Vijay's second half-century of the match have given Essex a chance of toppling Nottinghamshire in their Specsavers County Championship meeting at Trent Bridge.
Michael Pepper was playing the sixth hole at the Gog Magog golf course in Cambridge when he received a call to hurry back to The CloudFM County Ground: Adam Wheater had damaged his shoulder and Pepper was required to stand in behind the stumps.
Peter Siddle took 5-48 with some typically accurate bowling as Essex's claimed their fourth Specsavers County Championship of the season by beating Hampshire by an innings & 52 with 14.3 overs left on the final day.