Assistant coach Matt Mason believes Worcestershire all-rounder Ross Whiteley will be "an important team member" if he replicates his bowling performance in the two-day friendly encounter with Gloucestershire at New Road.

Whiteley has already demonstrated his superb fielding skills and ability to take teams apart with his big hitting with opener Richard Oliver claiming "Ross hits 12s, not sixes!"

But on Friday he also demonstrated the potential Mason and Director of Cricket Steve Rhodes have always felt he possessed with the ball.

He picked up four wickets and beat the bat on many occasions as he operated effectively from the Diglis End.

Mason, who is also the county's bowling coach, said: "That's what we need from Ross, to build some confidence over the next few weeks. He's got a lot more belief in his bowling now.

"We've always had it but he is starting to believe it and that confidence is showing in his performances.

"He's a fine cricketer, a guy who can field like he does and bat like he does, and if he can bowl like that, then he'll be an important team member for us.

"It really does help the balance of our side."

With Whiteley showing his bowling skills, Worcestershire have four genuine all-rounders with Joe Leach, Gareth Andrew and Ed Barnard completing the quartet.

Mason said: "That is great because it gives you flexibility, you can bat deep, you've got great bowling options, in one-day cricket as well. They are all a really exciting bunch.

"If you put them alongside Shants (Jack Shantry) and Charlie (Morris) you have a great unit of bowlers. There's lots to be excited about on the back of these last few days (against Gloucestershire."

Skipper Daryl Mitchell said: "If we can get Ross fit and firing with the ball, that's a real asset to us.

"Ross is also more than capable top six as is probably Joe Leach and Ben Cox and people like that as well.

"If you've got these guys who are very versatile, it gives options to me and Bumpy in selection and also options for me out on the field as well."