Nottinghamshire scored a batting bonus point for the first time this season when they reached an all-out total of 243 on the first day of their LV= County Championship match against Worcestershire at New Road.

There was barely time for the home side to begin their innings and stumps were reached with a score of 5-0 on the board.

The first surprise of the day was the dry start. Despite Worcester being hit by a couple of days of torrential rain and the New Road ground having a less-than-perfect record for coping with inclement weather, the toss took place on time, to the surprise of Mick Newell, director of cricket.

“In days gone by we wouldn’t have played on here today,” he said.

“And certainly when we came off for rain that would have been it for the day. I was surprised when we arrived and found that play was scheduled to start on time.”

Newell felt that his side should have scored more than their eventual total.

“I’m disappointed because I don’t think anybody has got out to a really good ball. They battled hard and grafted but then everyone got out to an attacking shot.

“It’s not that it was the wrong shot to play – it’s just that the right shot was badly played. They’ve all grafted hard then got a bad ball, a half-volley or a short ball and hit it straight to a fielder. It’s frustrating really because I think we missed out on an opportunity to score another 75 or 80 runs on there.”

The Nottinghamshire side showed just one change from the side that drew against Somerset last week. Andre Adams, restored to good health after a virus, returned in place of Paul Franks.

For the fourth successive match this season Chris Read was unsuccessful at the toss and Daryl Mitchell had no hesitation in asking Notts to bat first.

With a quorum of England selectors in attendance, Andy Flower, Geoff Miller, Graeme Thorpe and Ashley Giles, Alex Hales would have been keen to make them sit up and take note as he ventured out to begin his innings.

He got off to a perfect start, punching Alan Richardson’s opening delivery away through the covers for four.
The home attack would have been licking their lips at the prospect of some early seam movement, with New Road hosting its first home match of the season, but the batsmen gained the early initiative with a succession of boundaries.

A push into the offside by Neil Edwards brought up the fifty in the seventeenth over and they advanced the score to 69-0 by 12.30pm, when the rain arrived to bring an early lunch.

The second over of the restart saw Worcs make their first breakthrough. Edwards (23) clipped Richardson off his legs but then looked crestfallen as James Cameron took an excellent diving catch at square leg.
Hales (49) soon followed his partner, nibbling at Jones and edging high to Mitchell at second slip.
A quiet passage of play, which only featured one boundary, then saw Michael Lumb and Samit Patel consolidate Nottinghamshire’s position.

Only 41 runs were scored in the first hour and three quarters after lunch as the battle between bat and ball was totally joined. Lumb (17) was then unlucky to lose his wicket, chopping a widish delivery from Cameron onto his stumps.

Patel (26) and James Taylor added 28 for the fourth wicket, before Richardson struck again, having England’s newest Test player caught by a leaping Klinger in the gully.

Resuming from the tea-time score of 144-4 Taylor and Chris Read nudged Notts past last weeks total of 162 and on to their highest score of the season so far.

After a stand of 56, Notts lost their fifth wicket, again to a smart gully catch by Klinger. Read (34) slashed Aneesh Kapil away and the Australian parried the ball up into the air and took the easy rebound.

Kapeel, on to use up a few quick overs prior to the taking of the second new ball, then made further inroads. Taylor (38) was caught behind and Ben Phillips (2) nicked to Mitchell at slip.

With the first batting point of the season safely secured Andre Adams (21) opened his shoulders to launch Richard Jones for two maximums but the bowler struck back as Kervezee held a catch at deep midwicket.

Luke Fletcher (0) lost his off peg to Jones and the same bowler collected his fourth wicket when Steven Mullaney (24) also found the safe hands of Kervezee.