Leicestershire batsman plundered the Essex bowlers on the second day of this CricInfo Championship match despite a truncated day that saw the loss of 52 overs due to rain.

Neither of yesterday's century makers, Iain Sutcliffe or Aftab Habib, prospered significantly and it was left to Darren Maddy and Neil Burns to steer their side towards their mammoth total against a beleaguered Essex attack.

Both batsmen reached entertaining half-centuries bringing a refreshing element of flair as they deployed a mixture of the conventional and the cavalier to good effect but it was the exploits of 19-year-old Justin Bishop that captured the attention.

The tireless Bishop delivered 20 of the 50 overs bowled and collected 4-96 in the day to finish with completed innings figures of 5-148, a career-best championship return for the left-arm pace bowler.

A reduced morning session cut to 25 overs because of rain saw the visitors complete their full quota of batting bonus points as they scored 74 runs for the loss of Sutcliffe, who had spent seven hours and twenty minutes comprising his 165 before was bowled to give Bishop his first prize of the day.

The afternoon session was totally wiped out but when play did resume at 4.50 pm, the visitors made up for lost time although Habib was soon trapped leg before by the indefatigable Bishop. The batsman had struggled to penetrate the field spending 88 deliveries adding 23 runs before the fledgling bowler struck him on the front pad to earn an lbw decision.

Maddy was Bishop's next victim shortly after he had reached a pleasing half-century - from 71 balls having struck nine boundaries - when he edged an outswinger behind the wicket. Shahid Afridi had already offered two catches off Bishop to the hapless Graham Napier when the bowler gained belated reward seeing Peter Such execute a catch at long-on.

Phil DeFreitas joined Burns in a whirlwind seventh-wicket stand worth 70 runs in nine overs with the former England all-rounder striking 31 with five boundaries including two huge sixes from the 22 deliveries before Napier completed a catch just inside the rope at wide long-on.

The last three wickets fell in consecutive overs although former Essex wicket-keeper Burns had time achieve an unbeaten half-century from 45 balls in rapidly failing light before his side were dismissed for 559 although the poor light prevented the home side from beginning their reply.