MATT Mason has praised the determination of Worcestershire’s bowlers to fill the gap left by Alan Richardson after the County suffered more weather woe at Hampshire.

Rain meant play was called off on the LV= County Championship clash’s second day with Hampshire still on their overnight 37-3 after being put into bat.

In that short spell, bowling coach Mason saw Chris Russell and Charlie Morris continue the form shown in pre-season as they look to fill the shoes left by Richardson.

Mason said: “It is funny how the news of Alan’s retirement was received by the lads. We were concerned it would be a big shock to them.

“But you could almost see their eyes light up and they were thinking ‘here is an opportunity for us’.

“They have worked so hard this winter and at the moment I am really pleased with where all the bowlers are at.

“I think they’ve all pushed themselves really hard and the motivation is there definitely.

“When they saw a chance created by Alan leaving, it has driven everyone to work the hardest they have done for some time in my opinion.”