Only 26.1 overs were possible on the opening day of Worcestershire’s LV= County Championship match against Surrey at New Road, with the home side on 58-0.
In dull but dry conditions Daryl Mitchell won the toss and chose to bat first, with the side unchanged from the XI that played Middlesex at Lord’s.
Mitchell and Michael Klinger both played carefully to the new ball attack of Jon Lewis and Tim Linley and their patient approach was put to the test by George Edwards, making his Surrey Championship debut, who looked quick and lively. Despite a few edges, play and misses and lbw appeals the opening partnership had reached 58, with 3 fours, when just after 12:45 pm the players went off for rain, with Mitchell on 30 off 92 balls and Klinger on 16 off 68 balls.
Lunch was then taken but the rain continued to fall throughout the afternoon and eventually umpires Rob Bailey and Peter Willey called the day’s play off at 4:30pm.
Another frustrating day but the forecast looks to be better for the second day.
Worcestershire were all out for 285 after the second day of their LV= County Championship match against Surrey at New Road.
Play began on time, despite the heavy overnight rain, and the score had moved on to 65 when Daryl Mitchell played the ball back onto his stumps off Tim Linley for 31 and one run later Linley, in the same over, trapped Michael Klinger lbw for 20.
Vikram Solanki and Moeen Ali stood firm against the disciplined Surrey bowling and once they both settled at the crease they began to find the boundary, with Ali sweeping Gareth Batty for 6 and Solanki playing an effortless pull to the mid-wicket boundary for 4, and when rain brought the players off at 12:50pm Worcestershire had reached 146-2.
Lunch was then taken and in the afternoon session Ali had got to his 50 off 81 balls and the third wicket partnership had reached 102 when Solanki was bowled off his pad by Jon Lewis for 42. Ali was the fourth wicket to fall when he edged a climbing delivery from George Edwards to Steven Davies for 61 off 95 balls, with 6 fours and 1 six. James Cameron and Matt Pardoe took Worcestershire past 200 to gain their first batting point of the season and although Pardoe hit Batty for 6 over long-on the former Worcestershire man trapped Pardoe lbw for 12, with the score on 220-5.
At 3:10pm the rain had returned, with the score on 234-5, and an early tea was taken. At 3:45pm another rain delay led to a loss of five overs and when play resumed Worcestershire were to lose quick wickets as Ben Scott was run out by a throw from Kevin Pietersen in the covers for 12, Aneesh Kapil was caught behind for 5 and David Lucas was bowled for 3 to leave the home side on 253-8 when bad light stopped play.
Play then recommenced at 6:15pm, with a further 18 overs lost in the day, and Richard Jones was trapped lbw for 1. Alan Richardson then went past 1,000 first class runs with a cover drive for 4 and Cameron, who remained solid throughout, got to his 50, with a lofted on-drive for 6, before he holed out to Zander de Bruyn at deep mid-wicket off Linley for 52 off 125 balls, with 6 fours and 1 six, and Worcestershire were all out for 285 in 97.4 overs.
On an eventful third day at New Road when Worcestershire bowled out Surrey in their first innings for 113, the visitors, following on, ended the day on 216-4, and lead by 44 runs.
David Lucas got the first two wickets in Surrey’s first innings when, in the 4th over, Steven Davies was caught by Michael Klinger at third slip for 0 and then, in his next over, trapping Mark Ramprakash lbw for 0, with the score on 8-2.
Kevin Pietersen looked to be aggressive as he struck Lucas straight back down the ground for the first boundary of the day but then on 11 he got an outside edge off a drive and was caught behind by Ben Scott off Richard Jones who then got the wicket of the visiting captain, Rory Hamilton-Brown, for 0 when he edged to Daryl Mitchell at second slip to leave Surrey on 25-4.
Surrey then lost further wickets as Tom Maynard, unable to get the bat away from the ball, dragged it onto the stumps off Lucas for 0, and then there were three consecutive LBW’s as Jones got Zander de Bruyn (2), Alan Richardson accounted for Gareth Batty (2) and Jones trapping Jon Lewis (5) to leave the visitors in disarray at 43-8.
Jacques Rudolph, who was dropped by Mitchell twice at second slip on 1 & 7, and George Edwards saw the visitors through to lunch, with the score on 53 and then in the afternoon session Rudolph made Worcestershire pay as he went to his 50 off 81 balls. Edwards provided good support as they took Surrey past 100 but Edwards then edged behind to Scott off Lucas for 17 to end a ninth-wicket partnership of 60. Rudolph was the last man to go when he was bowled by Richardson for 68, off 127 balls, with 6 fours and 1 six, and the visitors were all out for 113 in 44.1 overs, with Lucas finishing on 4-37 off 20 overs, Jones 4-50 off 10 overs and Richardson 2-22 off 14.1 overs.
Worcestershire enforced the follow-on but in the 3rd over Richardson suffered an injury to his upper right arm and had to leave the field. Jones then came into the attack and got the wickets of both Rudolph, bowled for 2, and Ramprakash, caught down the legside by Scott for 0, to leave Surrey on 11-2. Pietersen then took the attack to the Worcestershire bowlers with an array of boundaries, including a six over long-on off Moeen Ali, and with solid support from Davies Surrey had reached tea on 62-2.
Soon after tea Pietersen reached his 50 off 49 balls and the third-wicket partnership had reached 87 when Davies edged behind to Scott off Jones for 24. Hamilton-Brown began his innings with three consecutive fours before Jones got his fourth wicket of the innings when Pietersen edged to Mitchell at second slip for 69 off 85 balls, with 10 fours and 1 six, to leave Surrey on 125-4, still trailing by 47 runs.
But then Hamilton-Brown and Maynard took Surrey into the lead as Maynard, in particular, played with attacking intent and he quickly reached his 50, by hitting Lucas to the covers for 4, off just 48 balls. Hamilton-Brown also got to his 50, just before stumps, off 57 balls as their unbeaten fifth-wicket partnership of 91 took Surrey to 216-4 at the close of play.
Worcestershire secured a draw against Surrey in their LV= County Championship match at New Road thanks, in large part, to a resolute innings from Matt Pardoe.
Surrey began the day on 216-4 and Rory Hamilton-Brown and Tom Maynard continued to dominate as their partnership went on at an aggressive pace. Maynard was the first to get to his century, by hitting Aneesh Kapil for six over long-on, off 102 balls and Hamilton-Brown also got to 100, with a four to the third-man boundary, off 144 balls.
Their fifth-wicket partnership had reached 225, a record fifth-wicket partnership for Surrey against Worcestershire, when Hamilton-Brown tried to hit Moeen Ali over the top and was caught by David Lucas at mid-off for 115 off 151 balls, with 14 fours.
Surrey had reached lunch on 382-5, leading by 210 runs, and then after lunch Maynard’s innings was over when he drove straight to Vikram Solanki at backward point off Lucas for 143, his highest first-class score, off 154 balls, with 17 fours and 1 six. Zander de Bruyn was the seventh wicket to fall when he drove to Daryl Mitchell at cover off Lucas for 34 and soon afterwards Surrey declared on 431-7, with Richard Jones taking 4-121 off 23.3 overs, Lucas 2-110 off 25 overs and Ali 1-61 off 17 overs.
Worcestershire required 260 runs to win off a minimum of 52 overs and after a solid start from Mitchell and Michael Klinger, who hit Jon Lewis for 6 over long-on, the first wicket fell in the 10th over when Klinger (15) got a delivery, from George Edwards, that rose sharply and the ball went to the substitute fielder, Chris Jordan, at backward point. Four balls later Vikram Solanki was out lbw to an Edwards yorker, which hit his foot, for 0 and when Lewis, in the next over, trapped Mitchell lbw for 6 Worcestershire had lost three wickets for no runs to leave them on 29-3.
No more wickets fell before tea but then in the evening session Ali was bowled when he dragged the ball back onto his stumps off Gareth Batty for 5, with the score on 48. James Cameron and Matt Pardoe steadied the ship by putting on 44 for the fifth wicket but then Batty took his second wicket when he bowled Cameron for 28. Ben Scott was the next wicket to fall when, attempting to drive Edwards, he edged back onto his stumps for 0 and when, in the same over, Kapil was caught brilliantly by Tim Linley at backward point for 2 Worcestershire were staring defeat at 100-7, with 18 overs remaining.
Pardoe and Lucas frustrated Surrey for over 10 overs until Lucas was caught behind by Steven Davies off Lewis for 19 but Surrey’s hopes of an unlikely victory were dashed by both Pardoe and Jones, who was able to leave the final five deliveries from Edwards, and after 52 overs Worcestershire came away with the draw by finishing on 150-8, with Pardoe unbeaten on 38 off 108 balls, with 5 fours.
So in the end Worcestershire survived, when at one stage they had Surrey on the back foot, and after five Championship matches they are in seventh place with 25 points.
WORCESTERSHIRE (285 & 150-8) DREW WITH SURREY (113 & 431-7d)