Somerset v Gloucestershire: Match Drawn

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Day Three: Review

There were unbeaten half centuries for both Jim Allenby and Tom Abell on the final day of Somerset’s pre-season match against Gloucestershire at Taunton Vale, which ended in a draw when bad light brought about an early finish at 5.10pm.

Afterwards the acting captain said: “It went as well as we could have hoped and over the two innings all of our bowlers had four to five spells and all of the batsmen got some runs and time out in the middle.

“We had those four or five sessions in the field as well and got a really good work out from the match. All of the bowlers got better as the game went on and all of the batsmen look to be in a pretty decent rhythm and got through that tough 20-30 ball period.

“We finished the game the dominant side as well which is what we had hoped for so from my point of view and from the coaches viewpoint everybody is really pleased with the first three days of the playing season.

“It felt good to be batting, although facing the new ball isn’t what I am used to but it was good to test myself in a tougher position to see how I am going. I have done a couple of things technically in the off season to my game and put them into action for the first time this match, so to get a couple of good innings was nice and confirms the changes I have made are positive.

Jim added: “To have faced 120 balls at this time of the year is really what you are looking for. You have as many nets as you like but doing it in a game is what you want so personally I am really happy with how it went and we are all feeling better for the three days.”

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Resuming on their morning total of 115 for 3, Gloucestershire continued to bat until shortly before lunch when they declared on 206 for 4, Hamish Marshall scoring 60 not out while Tom Abell was the only wicket taker in the morning for the hosts.

Needing 255 from a minimum of 74 overs Somerset opened the innings with Alex Barrow and Allenby. The pair had taken the total onto 15 off 5 overs when Barrow fell LBW to Matt Taylor off the final ball of the session.

Somerset captain Allenby was joined by Peter Trego after the break who moved onto 18 before he was caught at first slip. Adam Hose was then bowled for 8 to a ball from Noema-Barnett that kept low. Young wicket-keeper Ryan Davies played some attractive shots in his first outing for the club until he chipped to mid-off for 23.

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Allenby retired on 54 at the tea break and when play resumed Abell joined Hildreth and together they took Somerset onto 144 when last years top run scorer was out for 18, leaving the hosts still needing 111 for victory. Abell was joined by Craig Overton and batted in his usual calm and confident manner gathering his runs almost effortlessly. Shortly before the umpires decided to abandon play early, Tom brought up a deserved half century.

Somerset ended on 186 for five off 51.5 overs, 68 runs short of their target, Abell unbeaten on 55 while Overton was 8 not out.

The two sides meet against at Taunton Vale in two T20 matches the first of which starts at 11am.

Day Two: Review

The second day of Somerset’s pre-season match against Gloucestershire belonged to the batsmen, Marcus Trescothick leading the way with 95, Tom Abell hitting 40 and James Hildreth an unbeaten 54, which enabled the hosts to declare at tea 48 runs behind. Batting for a second time the visitors had reached 115 for three, a lead of 163 with one day of the match remaining.

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After the close Marcus Trescothick said: “This game is proving to be an ideal workout for us, with both the bowlers and the batsmen getting the chance to play outside on the grass.”

Regarding his own innings he said: “I’m happy that I was able to get the best part of three and a half hours out in the middle. I didn’t have a great deal of rhythm and was a bit inconsistent, but I would definitely take that for the first game of the season on a good pitch.”

“They had all of their front line seamers out and followed it up with their back up bowlers as well so it was very good practice at this early stage of the season.

Tres added: “The match is in a nice position now and both teams have batted for a good period of time and now we will have to wait and see if we can set up a game tomorrow afternoon.”

Resuming this morning on 2 without loss Trescothick and Abell looked untroubled and added 79 together before the youngster edged behind for 40. By lunch Somerset had moved onto 109 for 1, by which time the veteran batsman had moved onto 61. With the total on 117, Adam Hose was bowled by Norwell for eight, which brought James Hildreth to the wicket, who looked particularly comfortable in his first outing with the bat.

The third wicket pairing added 55 together before Trescothick was out for 95, which came off 166 balls with 17 fours. Hildreth looked untroubled and reached his fifty shortly before the tea interval by which time they had reached 229 for 3 and decided to declare, trailing by just 48 on first innings. Hildreth was unbeaten on 54 from 80 balls with eight 4s while Jim Allenby was not out 24.

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Batting for a second time after tea, Josh Davey made an early break through when he had Tom Smith LBW for 7 in the third over. Chris Dent took his score onto 42 when he was bowled by Pete Trego, who claimed his second wicket when he accounted for Gareth Roderick LBW for 33. By the close Gloucestershire had moved onto 115 for three, Hamish Marshall unbeaten on 18, while Trego ended with two for 16 off his seven over.

The final day of the game resumes at Taunton Vale at 11am on Wednesday.

The Somerset squad for this 12 a side contest is: Marcus Trescothick, Tom Abell, Adam Hose, James Hildreth, Jim Allenby (c) , Johann Myburgh, Pete Trego, Ryan Davies (wkt), Craig Overton, Tim Groenewald, Jamie Overton and Tom Barber

Day One: Review.

All of the Somerset bowlers enjoyed a good work out on the opening day of their first pre-season match against Gloucestershire who made 277 for nine declared batting first.  In reply Somerset reached two without loss at the close.

Craig Overton was the pick of the home bowlers with four wickets but left arm seamer Tom Barber, on trial after being released by Hampshire, caught the eye whilst Tim Groenewald also bowled well as they both claimed two wickets each.

After the close the four wicket hero said: “It was a good day for us and all of our bowlers got some miles in their legs which was what we needed to do.  I bowled a few overs and got some wickets which is always nice at this time of the year. It was a good wicket to play on and it did a little bit with the new ball which is what you expect in March.  Then it flattened out a bit which made it a bit tough later on.  It was really good to see so many people out at the Vale watching us and it was pretty nice fielding out in the sunshine.”

Looking ahead Craig said:“Hopefully tomorrow our batters can go out and enjoy some time in the middle, score a few runs for us and bat all day.”

After opting to bat first Gloucestershire were soon in trouble, Tim Groenewald picking up the first wicket of the season thanks to an excellent catch in the gully from Peter Trego as Smith was dismissed for one.

Craig Overton looked dangerous with the new ball and picked up a couple of wickets to reduce Gloucestershire to 46 for three. Roderick played well for his 36 not out, but trialist Tom Barber (two for 22) produced a lively spell as the visitors went into lunch on 126 for 5.

After the interval Gareth Roderick batted confidently for 65 before edging Overton to second slip where Marcus Trescothick took the catch. Tim Groenewald and Tom Abell also picked up a wicket each in the session as Somerset continued to chip away at the visitors batting lineup.

Craig Overton picked up another wicket in the afternoon session as Gloucestershire went to tea on 216 for 9.

The Gloucestershire last wicket pair of David Payne and Liam Norwell both continued to defy the bowlers and soon after Payne saw up his 50 the visitors declared on 277 for 9 off 72 overs.

Craig Overton ended with four for 54 off 14 overs, three of which were maidens. Groenewald took two for 25 off 10 with six maidens while Barber claimed two for 76 off 15 with one maiden.

Somerset openers Trescothick and Abell had scored two without loss when, after 2.3 overs in the fading light, play was called off for the day.

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