Worcestershire skipper Joe Leach is closing in on the completion of a superb Specsavers County Championship ‘hat-trick.’

Leach will go into the County’s next Championship match against Gloucestershire at New Road needing just three more wickets to reach the 50 mark in the competition for a third successive season.

The 26-year-old has led by example with the ball in the longer format of the game this summer.

Leach picked up 59 Championship wickets from 14 games in 2015, 65 from 16 matches in 2016 and to date has 47 from 10 appearances this summer after his three victims against Sussex at New Road.

It adds up to a staggering tally of 171 wickets from 40 matches since he forced his way back into the side for the third match of the 2015 season.

Leach is also the second highest wicket-taker in Division Two of the Championship after Sussex’s Jofra Archer (49) edged past him with five wickets at New Road.

Almost equally as impressive is the contribution of Josh Tongue who in his first season of senior cricket has 36 Championship wickets – the sixth best tally in Division Two.

On the batting front, Worcestershire opener Daryl Mitchell is the fourth highest Division Two run-getter with 758 behind Joe Denly (921), Luke Wells (794) and Paul Collingwood (788).

Mitchell is the only player in the division to have struck four centuries this summer.

County team-mate Joe Clarke’s excellent run of form has also catapulted into 10th spot with 722.

The duo both have four games remaining to try and reach the 1,000 run mark for the season – a milestone they both reached in first class cricket in 2016.