Wayne Madsen was in the runs on Day Three, hitting 78 as Derbyshire’s batsmen got more time in the middle against Lancashire.
Madsen struck a classy half-century, as well as putting on a partnership of 89 with Mikey Cohen, who provided strong resistance with 22 from 113 deliveries.
Derbyshire’s bowlers will have another chance to build match sharpness on the final day, with Lancashire set to bat for all of Day Four at Emirates Old Trafford.
For the third time in the match, Billy Godleman and Luis Reece came to the crease in Manchester, with the Derbyshire captain reaching 22 before he was dismissed by Danny Lamb.
Brooke Guest and Anuj Dal each departed for one, before Liam Hurt had Reece (21) caught by Tom Hartley, while Harvey Hosein retired on nought as a precaution after being struck on the arm.
Madsen reached his half-century in 96 balls, including six crisp boundaries, while Cohen provided a solid defence at the other end after Fynn Hudson-Prentice (3) was trapped lbw by Hartley.
Having struck ten fours on his way to 78, Madsen’s long vigil at the crease was brought to and end when he was bowled by Saqib Mahmood with around 30 minutes of Day Three to go, while Cohen (22) too fell shortly before the close.
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