Spinner Josh Baker completed a memorable hat-trick after a superb opening spell from Adam Finch as Worcestershire Seconds took command of their Championship match with Nottinghamshire at Lady Bay Sports Club in Nottingham.
Finch destroyed the Nottinghamshire top order after an unbeaten 177 from Jack Haynes had enabled Worcestershire to declare at 345-6 on a rain-hit second morning.
The England Under-19 paceman took four of the first five wickets to fall – and then Baker, a member of the current Academy intake, took centre stage.
He bowled Fateh Singh (7), after he went for an expansive drive, and then came his hat-trick which was spread over two overs.
Baker beat the defensive prod of Toby Pettman (2) who was bowled by the last delivery of one over.
Then the first two balls of the next over from Baker accounted for Dan Frost (1) and James Hayes (0), both pushing forward.
It is the first Second Eleven Championship hat-trick by a Worcestershire player since Matt Mason achieved the feat against Glamorgan at New Road in 2002.
Baker at that stage had taken four wickets in the space of 12 balls to help reduce Nottinghamshire to 96-9 after Finch’s superb efforts had provided the platform for his heroics.
They were eventually dismissed for 129 – a deficit of 216 – with Finch finishing with figures of 14-8-26-4 and Baker 17-8-20-4.
Worcestershire Club Captain, Joe Leach, did not enforce the follow on and the Seconds reached 42-1 from 12 overs by the close.
Worcestershire resumed on 312-5 and Jacques Banton (34) was dismissed by the first delivery he faced today when edging Zak Chappell to second slip.
The partnership with Haynes was worth 111 in 27 overs.
Haynes went past his previous Seconds best score of 165 versus Lancashire at Stourport in April.
He had batted for 323 minutes, faced 247 balls and struck 25 balls when the declaration came after two rain breaks – and then Finch was soon amongst the wickets.
He shared the new ball with Club Captain Joe Leach and struck twice in his first over.
Matthew Montgomery (1) slashed at a ball which bounced on him and was caught at first slip by Tom Fell and then Jamie Crawley (0) lost his off stump to a Finch delivery which jagged back.
Ben Martindale (8) was then undone by a Finch delivery slanted across him and he edged through to keeper Alex Milton.
Leach reduced Nottinghamshire to 20-4 when Travis Holland (6) was lbw working the ball to leg.
Finch had remarkable figures of 7-6-8-3 from his first spell.
He came back into the attack to break a partnership of 46, between Connor Brown and Chappell (24), with the latter providing Milton with another catch away to his right.
Baker then produced his memorable spell, before Reeve Evitts wrapped up the innings when opener Connor Brown – 64 from 175 balls with nine fours – was caught behind.
Leach did not enforce the follow on and Daryl Mitchell (0) was caught behind off the first ball of the innings from Chappell.
But Josh Dell (16 not out) and Tom Fell (21 not out) extended the overall lead to 258 by stumps