County Championship: Joe Clarke hits fifth Championship ton of summer at Worcester

Worcestershire skipper Daryl Mitchell
Worcestershire skipper Daryl Mitchell followed Joe Clarke's lead in reaching 1,000 runs for the season
Specsavers County Championship Division Two, New Road, day one
Worcestershire 255-6: Clarke 117*, Mitchell 67; Cotton 3-46
Derbyshire: Yet to bat
Worcestershire 2 pts, Derbyshire 2 pts

Joe Clarke made his fifth County Championship century of the summer as Worcestershire batted out the opening day against Derbyshire at New Road.

The England Lions batsman ended on 117 as the hosts made 255-6 in 92 overs in their pursuit of overhauling Kent for second spot and £43,000 prize money.

Skipper Daryl Mitchell weighed in with 67 as he completed 1,000 first-class runs for the fourth time in his career.

Ben Cotton picked up 3-46for Derbyshire on his firstteam recall.

The visitors have not managed a Championship away victory and are hoping to avoid going an entire season without a win on the road for the first time since 2008.

Worcestershire batsman Joe Clarke told BBC Hereford & Worcester:

"It was quite difficult out there. The pitch is very slow. Once you get in, it is a lot easier but to start with it is very tough.

"It has got a little bit more pace in it now but this morning it was very slow and credit to Daryl Mitchell. He did a fantastic job in getting us through that period.

"It meant a lot to get a hundred because we've been struggling a little bit with the bat. In the last few weeks, we haven't been getting the scores we'd have liked and to be there at the end is very pleasing.

Derbyshire bowler Ben Cotton told BBC Radio Derby:

"It was nice to take a couple of wickets on my return. It took me a while to settle in for the first five or six overs, then I found a nice rhythm and took the wickets we needed.

"You've just got to put as many balls as you can in the right area and hopefully there is enough there to take an edge or get an lbw.

"Tony Palladino and Tom Milnes started well after tea and put some pressure on them and due to their hard work I took a wicket and managed to get another near the end as well."