Ross Whiteley and Ben Cox led a strong Worcestershire fightback on a truncated day three of the LV = County Championship clash with Somerset at Taunton.

Play did not get underway until 3.30pm after heavy overnight rain and Worcestershire were uneasily placed at 44-4 in reply to Somerset's 565-5 declared.

But Whiteley and Cox added an unbroken 128 in the 22 overs that were possible to take the visitors to 172-4 from 41 overs by the close.

Now they will be hoping for some play on the final day to help them in the pursuit of some batting bonus points particularly after close rivals Sussex obtained a maximum haul against Yorkshire.

Whiteley continued his excellent form since regaining his place in the four-day side with an unbeaten 78 from 101 balls with one six and 14 fours.

Cox,who scored a century in the innings win over Somerset at New Road earlier in the season, gave him excellent support and was 52 not out from 73 deliveries with one six and nine fours.

Heavy rain started to fall on Saturday evening and continued throughout the night and into the morning to rule out any chance of play before lunch.

The elements gradually improved and blue skies preceded the covers being taken off and an umpires inspection at 2.30pm which gave the thumbs up for play to start at 3pm with 51 overs remaining in the day.

But rain started to fall again just as the players were taking the field and prompted another delay  which led to the loss of another eight overs.

Whiteley and Cox were both unbeaten on eight and the former was quickly into his stride.

He steered Gregory to third man for the first boundary of the day and a drive to the ropes off the same bowler brought up the 50.

Cox square drove Craig Overton for four and then edged him for another boundary.

A cut for four by Cox off Craig Overton brought up the 50 partnership and the Somerset paceman was then on the receiving end of two straight drives to the boundary by Whiteley.

The former Derbyshire all-rounder brought up his half century in the grand manner with a six backward of square off Gregory.

Cox then climbed into Jamie Overton with four, six, four in an over, and the 100 stand was raised in 17 overs, before the players went off again until they returned at 6.10pm for a swansong to proceedings.

In that short period there was time for Cox to go to his half century via an extra cover drive for four off Gregory.