George Bartlett posted an excellent maiden hundred for Northamptonshire before a combination of rain and bad light frustrated the side on Day 2 against Leicestershire.

Bartlett, who moved to Northampton from Somerset at the end of last season, posted his maiden hundred for his new county and finished unbeaten on 126 as Northamptonshire began the second day by scoring 116 in 14 overs to secure maximum batting points, before declaring on 453 for seven.

Chris Tremain (37) and Lewis McManus (28 not out) backed up Bartlett’s fine innings, before stalwart seam bowler Ben Sanderson supplied the bonus of a big wicket in his first over as Australian opener Marcus Harris was dismissed for a duck.

Leicestershire, for whom Louis Kimber is unbeaten 47, were looking to rebuild when gloomy conditions forced the players off the field in mid-afternoon never to return. Only 37 overs had been possible and with wet weather forecast for day three this may be yet another match destined to end in a draw.

Having closed the opening day on 337 for six, Northamptonshire had hopes of securing perhaps two more batting bonus points by reaching 400 within 110 overs, although a cold, cloudy morning made for weather conditions that were hardly ideal. Moreover, the Leicestershire bowling attack fancied they could do some damage with a ball that was still relatively new.

In the event, the first hour could hardly have been much more one-sided as Bartlett and Tremain, followed by McManus, picked off boundaries at will to top 450, thereby collecting the maximum five batting points. The home attack had struggled for consistency at times on day one and again bowled too many loose deliveries.

Tremain, in his final match for the county before returning to Australia, muscled 37 from 44 balls, with six fours and a booming straight six off Tom Scriven. McManus deployed a range of innovations before slog-sweeping Rehan Ahmed for six to reach the target with two balls to spare, finishing with an unbeaten 28 from 15. Ahmed picked up a second wicket when Tremain found the fielder at deep midwicket but the England spinner’s figures took a dent with 28 conceded off his last two overs.

Bartlett, who reached his maiden Northamptonshire century from 180 balls when he drove Scott Currie for his 15th four, also slog-swept a maximum off Ahmed for a final boundary count of 18 fours and a six.

The first of two stoppages for rain prompted a declaration by skipper Luke Procter, after which the wicket of Harris in the first of eight overs possible before lunch in Leicestershire’s reply capped a more than satisfactory opening session for the visitors. Sanderson found the edge as the Australian left-hander, who made a double hundred against Derbyshire last week, pushed at a ball outside off stump to be caught behind without scoring.

Another rain shower delayed the resumption by 35 minutes, a break in the weather allowing another 15.1 overs before heavy cloud made it too gloomy to continue, albeit two and half hours before play was finally abandoned for the day.

Kimber, in need of a score, was three short of a solid half-century but he had lost second-wicket partner Rishi Patel after a stand of 57.

Patel, aggressive as usual, found the boundary five times in six legitimate deliveries facing Procter, but succumbed to the all-rounder’s next one, propping forward to defend but feathering an edge through to McManus.

Leicestershire finished the day 97/2, trailing Northamptonshire’s first innings by 356 heading into Day 3 where the weather looks to be a prominent factor in deciding the result once again.