Rudolph reigns on wet turf

Yorkshire 394-3 v Worcestershire

Even the pace-sapping qualities of Headingley's lush new outfield could not stop Yorkshire establishing a commanding position as Worcestershire, already on the end of two defeats, endured what will certainly not be their last punishing day in the field this season.

Centuries from Jacques Rudolph – who is six short of a double-hundred – and Anthony McGrath helped Yorkshire put the promoted side under the cosh but it might have been much worse had shots that looked nailed-on boundaries not regularly pulled up short. After the installation of a £600,000 drainage system, the laying of new turf at the Test ground was completed less than a month ago and the grass cannot yet be cut to a normal length.

From Yorkshire's point of view, however, this was merely inconvenient. More embarrassing, after a wet night, was the loss of a sunny and dry morning session because of soggy conditions underfoot, which was just the thing the new system was meant to prevent.

The problem, apparently, is that the sand layer beneath the grass, heavily compacted to iron out some of the field's more pronounced undulations, needs aerating. Yet, to do that at this stage – with a tractor armed with spikes – would risk ripping up the turf, which is not yet bedded in.

Not that this was a problem in any way for Rudolph or McGrath against Worcestershire's injury-hit attack. Rudolph, who is worried that this season might be his last because of changes to the Kolpak rules, built on his 73 overnight with a willingness to scamper between the wickets that never flagged. Some 126 of his runs came in ones, twos and threes.

McGrath, the captain, was scarcely less crease-bound, although both men recognised the value of taking the aerial route. McGrath, who fell ultimately for 120 when he lofted Daryl Mitchell to extra cover, hooked Imran Arif for six and went to his fifty by dealing similarly with a short ball from Chris Whelan. Rudolph drove a six over spinner Gareth Batty's head to complete his 150.

At this, one imagines Michael Vaughan must have been cursing more, perhaps, than over his omission from the Test side. His contribution to Yorkshire's total was limited to 12 balls and five runs, his first full stroke of the day, driven through the covers in familiar style, being followed immediately by a catch at the wicket as he failed to safely fend away a shortish ball from Ashley Noffke.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
From Mean Girls to Mamet: Lindsay Lohan
theatre
Sport
Nathaniel Clyne (No 2) drives home his side's second goal past Arsenal’s David Ospina at the Emirates
footballArsenal 1 Southampton 2: Arsène Wenger pays the price for picking reserve side in Capital One Cup
News
Mike Tyson has led an appalling and sad life, but are we not a country that gives second chances?
peopleFormer boxer 'watched over' crash victim until ambulance arrived
Arts and Entertainment
Geena Davis, founder and chair of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media
tv
News
i100
Travel
travelGallery And yes, it is indoors
Arts and Entertainment
The Tiger Who Came To Tea
booksJudith Kerr on what inspired her latest animal intruder - 'The Crocodile Under the Bed'
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
News
Alan Bennett criticised the lack of fairness in British society encapsulated by the private school system
peopleBut he does like Stewart Lee
Sport
John Terry, Frank Lampard
footballChelsea captain sends signed shirt to fan whose mum had died
News
people
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Syria air strikes: ‘Peace President’ Obama had to take stronger action against Isis after beheadings

Robert Fisk on Syria air strikes

‘Peace President’ Obama had to take stronger action against Isis after beheadings
Will Lindsay Lohan's West End debut be a turnaround moment for her career?

Lindsay Lohan's West End debut

Will this be a turnaround moment for her career?
'The Crocodile Under the Bed': Judith Kerr's follow-up to 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea'

The follow-up to 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea'

Judith Kerr on what inspired her latest animal intruder - 'The Crocodile Under the Bed' - which has taken 46 years to get into print
BBC Television Centre: A nostalgic wander through the sets, studios and ghosts of programmes past

BBC Television Centre

A nostalgic wander through the sets, studios and ghosts of programmes past
Lonesome George: Custody battle in Galapagos over tortoise remains

My George!

Custody battle in Galapagos over tortoise remains
10 best rucksacks for backpackers

Pack up your troubles: 10 best rucksacks for backpackers

Off on an intrepid trip? Experts from student trip specialists Real Gap and Quest Overseas recommend luggage for travellers on the move
Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world