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Middlesex make good use of rain-hit day

Middlesex CCC

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Middlesex made a positive start to their reply to relegation-threatened Worcestershire’s 323 in the rain-ravaged LV= County Championship Division One match at New Road.

At stumps they were 49 without loss after 13 overs on a frustrating day when persistent heavy rain during the morning, plus further outbreaks after lunch, meant play was unable to start until 4:30pm following extensive mopping-up operations.

Worcestershire resumed in front of a handful of spectators on 295 for eight off 96 overs.

Sam Robson

Opener Sam Robson struck an unbeaten 27 to help Middlesex reach 49 without loss in reply to Worcestershire's 323 all out at New Road

Skipper Daryl Mitchell, unbeaten with 129 overnight, and Chris Russell, on eight, quickly pushed the hosts on to 300 to enable them to pick up a valuable third bonus point.

Russell moved on to 14 before he fell victim to a smart catch at first slip by Dawid Malan off paceman Toby Roland-Jones, who finished with 5-72.

Last man Alan Richardson chipped in with 18 before he was bowled by Tim Murtagh to leave opener Mitchell stranded on 133 off 323 balls, including 13 fours.

It is the second time the 28-year-old has carried his bat for Worcestershire having scored 70 not out against Sussex at Hove in 2007.

Earlier this month Mitchell’s team-mate Phil Hughes also batted through the innings against Warwickshire at Edgbaston when he scored 135 not out.

Mitchell’s century - his third in first-class cricket at New Road - allowed his side to top 300 in the first innings of a championship match for only the second time this season.

When further rain sent the players back to the pavilion shortly after 6pm Chris Rogers was unbeaten on 17, with Sam Robson on 27 not out during a day when the grim weather allowed only 19.3 overs to be bowled.

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