Twose grinds way to big hundred

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The Independent Online
BARRIE FAIRALL

reports from Edgbaston

Warwickshire 403-6 v Worcestershire

Roger Twose finally celebrated his call to the New Zealand colours this winter with a century for Warwickshire yesterday. At the end of the drought in this parched parish, though, the left-hander's flow of runs all but dried up thanks to weather breaks and tea - his last 11 runs to take him to three figures took almost two hours.

Twose, however, was not to be denied and his third Championship hundred of the season graduated to a large one. While England's loss may become a real gain for the Kiwis, Warwickshire were looking to benefit on the back of their export as they pursued a hat-trick of wins in defence of the title.

Worcestershire, meanwhile, appeared only too willing to oblige after being condemned to the field. Excited by a bit of bounce when bowling from the Pavilion End, Paul Thomas, for one, became completely carried away. This was not the Test terror track, though, nestling a couple of strips away from the one on which the West Indies wreaked such havoc against England last month.

Thomas, tearing in, bowled a nine-ball opening over and subsequently went for plenty whenever he dropped short. This suited Twose, who tucked in with a relish in the 14th over with a couple of successive, exquisite cuts to the boundary, followed by another when Thomas again overstepped the mark.

While Worcestershire may be worrying what Allan Donald may achieve with his extra pace on this wicket, yesterday's concern was a Warwickshire run-rate that reached five an over at one stage and may have stayed that way had there not been four interruptions for showers.

Twose was the sufferer in this respect. He was on 89 after a third-wicket stand worth the same figure when Trevor Penney, who had just pulled Stuart Lampitt over the midwicket boundary, was caught at slip. That was in the 42nd over but Twose had to wait until the 60th before it was time to raise his bat and acknowledge the crowd.

His first 50 had come from 81 balls, the second from 116 in which he had added only four boundaries to his previous 10.

Still, after three escapes, he survived the day, featuring in a stand of 137 for the fifth wicket with his captain, Dermot Reeve, and three others over 50 or more besides as he reached 179.

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