Ajinkya Rahane marked his Hampshire debut with a century before Sam Northeast boosted his England Test ambitions with a hundred of his own on the Isle of Wight.

Rahane became the first Indian to play for Hampshire and just the seventh cricketer to score a ton on his debut for the county before he was finally out for 119.

He shared a record 257-run stand for the third wicket with Northeast, who continued his eye-catching early season form with an almost impeccable 133.

New Forest Post:

Sam Northeast (Photo by Graham Brown)

In doing so, Northeast became the season's highest run-maker in either division of the Specsavers County Championship.

Hampshire eventually declared on 367 for five with a 438-run lead, which was whittled down to 397 at close, with Notts 42-2.

On another beautifully sunny day at Newclose on a freshly heavy rolled wicket, Stuart Broad had Oli Soames caught behind in the second over before Northeast and Rahane took control.

New Forest Post:

Ajinkya Rahane (Photo by Graham Brown)

Rahane, having scored 50 in 64 balls, joined a very exclusive club when he flicked expertly off his legs to reach his hundred.

Only Cecil Abercrombie, Dennis Baldry, Richard Hayward, John Crawley, Shane Watson and Andy Bichel had scored centuries on their debuts for Hampshire.

Stand-in captain Northeast has been in exceptional form this season, scoring two fifties and now two hundreds in seven innings in the County Championship.

When he reached his half-century in the morning session, from 88 balls, he overtook Gary Ballance, who has had two fewer innings, as the leading run scorer in the country.

Northeast was given a life on 81 when an attempted cut flew to Matt Carter at first slip off the bowling of Jake Ball.

Once the former Kent batsman had composed himself - and changed his box - he briskly set off again towards three figures.

Northeast’s 23rd first-class hundred was brought up in 162 balls and included 11 boundaries.

Rahane began to be peppered by short balls but, having successfully negotiated the legside traps, he left a turning delivery from Carter and was bowled. 

With England searching to fill gaps at the top of the batting order for this summer's Ashes, Northeast’s early season form could put him in the reckoning.

Either side of tea, with the declaration looming, Northeast began to cut loose slightly more, typified with a towering six over mid-wicket.

But that proved his downfall as soon after the interval as he skied Steven Mullaney to Stuart Broad at mid-on.

Aneurin Donald was soon bowled by a Mullaney delivery which stayed low – the Nottinghamshire captain celebrating his 100th wicket.

Ian Holland and Tom Alsop, who scored a 47-ball fifty, then blasted an unbroken 88-run stand in under 10 overs before Hampshire declared on 367 for five.

Nottinghamshire lost both openers in the 15 overs that remained.

Ben Duckett was lbw to Keith Barker before Ben Slater was caught behind by  Alsop.

Rahane said: “I was pretty disappointed in the first innings the way I got out so I wanted to make it count.

“We needed that partnership between me and Sam because we were in a tricky situation this morning and the intent we showed in the middle was very special.

“I really enjoyed the partnership, our communication was fantastic.

“I was happy with my discipline. I had the mindset to play close to the body which I knew wasn’t going to be easy in England.

“In India we can drive the ball but here you have to respect the conditions. They have a very good bowling attack but we’re in a good position.”