Somerset batsman Nick Compton’s bid to enter the record books was wrecked by the weather in the LV= County Championship clash with Worcestershire at New Road.
Needing 59 to become the first player in 24 years to reach 1,000 runs by the end of May, he had made only nine from 22 balls when light rain set in, with the Cidermen on 27 for two in reply to Worcestershire’s 340.
Compton looked cool and composed when he went to the middle at 2.05pm, with David Lucas fired up after dislodging Alex Barrow with a catch behind the wicket.
Worcestershire’s left-arm pace man welcomed Compton with a bouncer, but in his following over the most prolific batsman in the county game this season confidently drove a boundary past extra cover.
Somerset lost Arul Suppiah, the opener tamely pulling Richard Jones to square leg, before the umpires took the players off the field at 2.36pm.
Cruelly for Compton, with his total on 950 runs from 13 innings, he could only watch from the balcony for three hours as the drizzle wiped out 53 overs on the last day of the month.
It was doubly frustrating after everything had gone according to plan in the morning. The ever-willing Pete Trego led the way as Somerset captured the home side’s last seven wickets for the addition of 70, but not before Vikram Solanki completed his first hundred of the season.
Trego has propped up an injury-hit attack this summer with 31 Championship wickets. A sustained spell of three for 19 in ten overs gave him a full return of five for 75 from 37 overs, although the day began with the pace man frustrated after an lbw appeal against Solanki was turned down.
Trego’s mood was not helped when Solanki pulled and drove him for boundaries as he moved up to a century including 13 fours and a six, but on reaching 302 Worcestershire suffered a major collapse.
Trego reacted quickly at second slip to take James Cameron’s edge off Alfonso Thomas and then fired in a yorker to bowl Solanki for 106.
Matt Pardoe, lbw playing across the line, and Lucas, comprehensively bowled, became further victims for Trego and other wickets fell to left-arm spinner George Dockrell and the Overton twins, Craig and Jamie.
At the end of the day’s play, Somerset’s director of cricket, Brian Rose, said: “We have played extraordinarily well so far in the whole of this game, and today was only spoiled by us losing two wickets.
“The way that Pete Trego bowled was exemplary. If you are bowling 37 overs and taking five wickets for 75 runs, you have done extraordinarily well, and it shows a great deal of character and skill on that type of wicket.”
Regarding Compton just missing out on his rare feat, Rose said: “He was thwarted by the weather and it was almost as if it was fated to happen.
“We had a slow day’s play on Wednesday, so it was always likely he might not have enough time today to bat,” Rose added.