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Rain renders Red Rose charge immaterial

Worcestershire CCC

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Lancashire had to settle for a draw to begin their LV= County Championship Division Two campaign after the slim hope of victory over Worcestershire at Emirates Old Trafford was thwarted by final-day rain.

Ex-international duo Ashwell Prince and Simon Katich had helped the Red Rose dash to a first-innings lead of 114 by underpinning a score of 448 for seven declared with 95 and 84 respectively.

Worcestershire were then reduced to 17 for one in the ninth over of their second innings, but rain arrived for the third day running with the score at 26 for one in the 12th, meaning Lancashire had to settle for nine points and the visitors six.

Captain Glen Chapple took the only Worcestershire wicket to fall when he had Matt Pardoe caught behind by Gareth Cross, the over after the opener had offered a tough chance to Wayne White at second slip off Kyle Hogg.

South African Prince and Australian Katich had ensured an entertaining start this morning as the hosts pursued more batting bonus points, eventually sharing 181 runs in 31.3 overs on the way to four batting points within the 110-over cut off.

The left-handers had shared 71 for the fourth wicket during the latter stages of day three - and they were quickly into their stride when play resumed.

Having been dropped on 30 at mid-off by substitute Shaaiq Choudhry off Alan Richardson, Katich eased Chris Russell over long-on for six on the way to a 70-ball half-century.

Prince was also dropped off Richardson on 87 by Moeen Ali at deep square-leg.

He had already pulled Russell and Richardson for sixes by that stage and fell trying to reach his hundred with a third. Daryl Mitchell ran around from mid-on to allow Richardson a bit of revenge and leave the score at 360 for four in the 109th over.

Katich also fell within sight of three figures when he feathered an attempted cut off Moeen to wicketkeeper Michael Johnson.

Gareth Cross was then run out going for a fourth and Steven Croft caught at first slip by Mitchell off David Lucas.

Chapple and White returned after lunch to add another 32 runs in four overs before the declaration.

In theory Lancashire had a minimum of 62 overs to bowl, but almost 49 of those were lost, making it a total of 110.5 in the match.

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