Steve Rhodes has praised the fighting qualities shown by Worcestershire throughout the season as mirrored in the current LV = County Championship match with champions and leaders Yorkshire at Scarborough.

Worcestershire came within one run of avoiding the follow on against an international quality attack and then a century partnership between Ross Whiteley and Brett D'Oliveira carried the game into the final day.

Whiteley will resume on 65 and Joe Leach 14 with Worcestershire 71 ahead with four second innings wickets in hand.

Director of Cricket Rhodes told BBC Hereford-Worcester's Dave Bradley: "First and foremost, I'd really commend our lads for their efforts. They've tried so hard this game against the champions and a really good team.

"They keep coming at you with the ball and for us to get so close to avoiding the follow on was remarkable and testament to the efforts they all put in.

"But to miss out when you are one run away from it, in the context of the match, was an awful feeling to be honest.

"Even after that, we fought hard. We had a marvellous partnership between Brett and Ross and thankfully for us Ross and Leachy are still at the crease.

"We've got a lead, and we can score some more, and we don't know what the weather is going to do, so there are all interesting things which could happen tomorrow."

Saeed Ajmal's rapid 37 took Worcestershire to within that single run of avoiding the follow on as they were dismissed for 280.

Rhodes said: "He got a 50 the last time he was here with us and the thing about him is he's got experience, he's not frightened about playing certain shots, particularly against the spinners, but also the quicker men.

"He finds a way of scoring runs and to get so close…..we have fought so hard in this game that I want to get something out of the game and having to follow on it makes life difficult.

"Fingers crossed, we can get a few more runs tomorrow and make it interesting for Yorkshire."

Rhodes added: "We've got some great young lads and, although I've said it time and time again, they have got more quality than us, the opposition, and we have played against teams with more quality.

"But again our effort levels have been fantastic and hopefully they will be thinking 'crikey, they've made us work hard this match' and I think we have. We've played some really good cricket.

"We could have been a bit better with the ball on the first day but since then we've fought so hard, I'm very proud of them and we don't know what the result is going to be.

"We never write ourselves off because these two lads can put on some runs and we can bowl them out. But you can ever knock this team this year.

"They have tried their absolute best every single game they've played and I'm proud of them.

"If these two are together after an hour, then they will have put on a few runs more and we are starting to looking a little bit rosier going forward.

"There is a little bit of turn in the wicket. Rashid has bowled well, their seamers have bowled well and aggressively and we certainly have had a taste of what international standard cricket is all about with the quality of opposition we are playing against.

"It's marvellous experience for us all and will be a shame if we don't get something out of the game because I think we deserve it for the effort.

"There's another day to go and lots more could happen."