Worcestershire Head Bowling Coach Alan Richardson gave his reaction at the end of day two of the Specsavers County Championship match with Surrey at Blackfinch New Road.
Wayne Parnell’s 42 held the latter part of the innings together as Worcestershire progressed from their overnight 288-6 to 336 all out.
Then the South African claimed the first three wickets to fall as Surrey, despite an unbeaten century from Rory Burns, closed on 313-6.
Richardson said: “The game has moved forward. You’d like to think we are slightly ahead of it.
“I think we batted well with a lot of patience, a lot of resilience. It was really good for us to bat that period of time to give us a chance to get a decent score on a wicket that looks like it has done a bit the whole way through against a very good attack.
“I think we are just slightly ahead of the game at the moment.
“It is quite difficult for a new batter. That has been proven throughout the game so far but once you get settled, there are guys capable of scoring big runs.
“Ross Whiteley got 90 and Rory Burns, I thought played very well.
Whiteley picked up a crucial wicket by dismissing Rikki Clarke for 33 to break a stand of 68 with centurion Rory Burns.
Richardson said: “Ross has worked really hard at his bowling during the season. He probably hasn’t all the opportunities he would always like.
“But he has kept working at it and it is something we’ve been really striving for. It’s a great little asset for us to have, a fifth seamer like Ross who swings the ball and hits the pitch really hard.
“He got that breakthrough for us and he has done it this season against Lancashire as well.”
Parnell has become an increasingly influential force after readjusting to red ball cricket after a 10 month lay-off.
Richardson said: “He has been in and around the international scene for a long time and he is a very fine player.
“He hadn’t bowled on the red ball side of it for a year so it has taken him a while to get back into that and we are seeing that he is getting better and better with each game.
“With the bat, to have someone of his quality in our lower middle order is fantastic, a bit of experience as well for the boys.
“He steadied the ship brilliantly with Ed Barnard and shepherded us to over 300.”
Parnell did have to leave the field after having the webbing on his right bandaged up when fielding a return drive from Burns.
Richardson said: “Wayne Parnell was a little unfortunate. It was just one that was patted back which caught him a little bit wrong so he’s gone to get that glued. Joe Clarke was off the field with a bit of back spasm.”