Worcestershire were again held up by the Essex second wicket pair of Alastair Cook and Tom Westley who extended their partnership past the 200 mark on day two of the Specsavers County Championship match with Worcestershire at New Road.

But rain and bad light meant no play was possible after 12.20 and umpires Neil Mallender and Michael Burns decided on taking tea at 3.10 ahead of a 4.00 inspection.

Essex resumed on 144-1 after only 40 overs had been possible on the opening day with Cook unbeaten on 53 and Westley on 70 not out.

The County opened their attack with Jack Shantry and New Zealand paceman Matt Henry who had taken the only wicket to fall yesterday.

Westley and Cook reeled off a successive of boundaries. The former had a slice of good fortune when twice edging Henry to the boundary although neither false shot went to hand.

A single on the legside off Ed Barnard brought up his hundred off 163 balls with 17 fours and one six out of 188-1 in the 55th over.

Westley then attempted to hook Joe Leach and the ball ended up going for four through long on!

The 200 partnership came up in 56 overs.

Bad light led to the players leaving the field at 12.20 and an early lunch was taken at 12.35. Westley was unbeaten on 122 and Cook 83.

Rain fell throughout the afternoon and prompted the early tea.