Ed Barnard made his highest score in the Specsavers County Championship as the Worcestershire batsmen provided strong resistance to earn a honourable draw on the final day against Derbyshire at the 3aaa County Ground.

Barnard was sent in yesterday evening as a nightwatchman and made an excellent 73 as Worcestershire looked to save the game after following on 303 behind.

Joe Clarke, Alexei Kervezee and Tom Kohler-Cadmore also dug in to deny Derbysire their first Championship win of the campaign and secure the five points available for a draw.

They closed on 294-6 with play called off with three balls remaining.

Worcestershire resumed on 24-1 and there had been no addition to the score when the County's leading run-scorer, Brett D'Oliveira, was trapped lbw by Tony Palladino for 14.

But that was Derbyshire's last success until mid afternoon as nightwatchman Barnard and Clarke featured in a partnership of 146 in 43.5 overs.

Barnard had scored his maiden Championship 50 in the previous game against Gloucestershire batting down the order but this was a different scenario going in at number three and he responded to the challenge in excellent fashion.

A cut for four off Wayne Madsen took Barnard to his half century off 103 balls with six boundaries.

Clarke showed a welcome return to form in four-day cricket after his brace of early season centuries and, like Barnard, also showed a lot of application.

The first part of the survival mission was achieved in reaching lunch on 125-2 and when play resumed Clarke reached his 50 off 105 balls with seven fours with a cut for two off Will Davis.

The third wicket pair looked in control but after making 63 – off 119 balls with nine fours – Clarke went to pull Davis and was caught by Neil Broom at mid wicket.

Barnard departed in a similar fashion on 73 – from 167 deliveries with nine fours – as he tried to pull Davis and the ball looped high in the air to Wayne Rutherford at 179-4 in the 58th over.

Further resistance then came from Kervezee and Kohler-Cadmore who saw Worcestershire through to tea without any further setbacks at 227-4 off 70 overs.

Kervezee played his shots and hit a short delivery from Davis over fine leg for six.

Derbyshire raced through their overs at the start of the final session to ensure the second new ball was available at 241-5 off 80 overs.

Kervezee had made 41 off 88 balls with three fours and a six when he was strangled down the legside by keeper Tom Poynton off Ben Cotton after adding 62 in 22 overs with Kohler-Cadmore.

Kohler-Cadmore reined in his attacking instincts in keeping with the need to see out the game.

But after making a disciplined 48 off 127 balls with eight fours he drove at Chesney Hughes and was caught at slip by Cotton.

Worcestershire were then 275-6 in the 98th over but Ben Cox and Ross Whiteley ensured the draw was secured.