Day Three Report:
Somerset’s batsmen enjoyed their last work out on the third and final day of their drawn match against Lancashire, the highlights of which included a partnership of 85 between Chris Rogers and Marcus Trescothick, a half century from James Hildreth and some lusty blows from Pete Trego.
Afterwards Somerset’s new captain said: “I think it has been a good couple of days for us in the end. There are a lot of positives here at the moment and that will count for a bit but there is still a long way to go. The bowlers bowled some really good spells and our batsmen enjoyed some time out in the middle and it was a good contest.
“I felt better about the way that I batted today although I am still a bit rusty, but it’s still a bit cold for me if I am honest! However I got some good time in the middle and I feel happy with where I am.”
Talking about his partnership with the former skipper Chris said: “Its nice batting down at the other end from a guy like Marcus and I think we are going to spur each other on this season and there will be a little bit of a challenge between the two of us, which is good to have.”
He added: “To be up there at the other end and watch a guy go about his work day to day is a bit of a pleasure and I am going to enjoy that very much.”
Resuming on their overnight total of 180 for 7, Lancashire had added just a single before they lost a wicket off the fourth ball of the day when Josh Davey had Clark caught by Trego for 35.
Five overs later Gregory bowled Parry for 24, which made Lancashire 199 for 9 and after the addition of 9 more runs they declared.
Davey ended the innings with 3 for 18 from 13 overs, while Groenewald finished with 2 for 30 and Gregory 2 for 57.
When Somerest replied openers Trescothick and Abell took the total onto 20 when the youngster was LBW to Simon Kerrigan for 9 soon after which there was a break for rain.
The afternoon session was dominated by a second wicket partnership of 85 in 19 overs between the Rogers and Trescothick. The pair saw three figures onto the board but on 105 the new captain was caught by Hameed off Proctor for 34.
Two overs later Trescothick followed Rogers back to the pavilion when he was run out for 55 with the score on 114 for 3.
By tea Hildreth and Allenby had moved the score onto 143 without further loss off 37 overs.
After the break Allenby helped to take Somerset to 167 when he was bowled by Jimmy Anderson for 21.
Hildreth and Roelof van der Merwe saw Somerset past the Lancashire total but on 212 Hildreth was LBW to Kerrigan for 57, at better than a run a ball with 12 fours.
Van der Merwe had moved onto 28 when he was caught on the deep midwicket boundary by Kyle Jarvis off Kerrigan.
Ryan Davies was stumped by his opposite number for 5 which brought Gregory to the wicket to join Trego who hit three fours and four sixes in an entertaining innings of 47 not out off 31 balls at the end of the day before Somerset declared on 278 for 7 just before 6pm.
Day Two Report:
The Somerset bowlers enjoyed a good work out across two full sessions at Taunton Vale on Tuesday afternoon where by the close Lancashire had moved onto 180 for seven off 71 overs.
At the end of the day Matt Maynard the Somerset Director of Cricket said: “We have had a good day and I have been impressed with the way that the bowlers have gone about it and how they have been backed up in the field. The energy levels have been high out there and I am delighted with it.
“All of guys have bowled well. Tim Groenewald and Lewis Gregory did well and backed up by Ben Green and Josh Davey, Pete Trego and Jim Allenby so all of the seamers have put the ball in the right areas and made it hard word for the Lancashire batsmen.
“We know that Taunton Vale is a good wicket so to restrict them to score at just over two and a half an over is testament to the areas we bowled. We made them play a lot and we have been aggressive the way that we have gone about it so overall a very pleasing day.
Matt added: “This is exactly what we need to do at Durham – hit good areas relentlessly all day because we know the wicket will offer more assistance than here at Taunton Vale. The key thing is not to try too hard and just put the ball in the right areas as we have done well today.”
Despite the morning sunshine the damp outfield and problems with the bowlers run ups prevented play getting underway until 1.30pm and once play did commence, bowling only took place from one end due to the adverse conditions.
In the first session of play during which 37 overs were bowled it was Groenewald who was the pick of the attack for Somerset, recording figures of 2 for 18 from 9 probing overs. He removed Karl Brown (12) and Luke Procter (24) as Lancashire reached 83 for 2 by the tea break.
After the interval the visitors had moved onto 97 when Luis Reece was caught by Ryan Davies off the bowling of Gregory.
Davey then struck twice in an over firstly when he had Haseeb Hameed caught by Davies for 43 then two balls later bowling new batsman Alex Davies which made Lancashire 106 for 5.
Green making his first appearance for the senior side grabbed his maiden wicket for Somerset when Steven Croft was LBW for 18.
Trego had Liam Livingstone caught by Davies for 17 with the score on 138 after which Jordan Clark (35*) and Stephen Parry (11*) remained together until the close.
Davey ended the day with 2 for 12 from his 10 overs, 3 of which were maidens while Groenewald finished with 2 for 30 off 12 with 5 maidens.
Somerset host Lancashire in a three day match that is due to start at Taunton Vale at 11am this morning.
Somerset’s squad of 13 is – Marcus Trescothick, Tom Abell, Chris Rogers (c), James Hildreth, Jim Allenby , Roelof van der Merwe, Pete Trego, Ryan Davies (wk), Lewis Gregory, Tim Groenewald, Ben Green, Josh Davey and Max Waller.
It is expected that Lancashire will name a strong line up that will include England Test Match bowler Jimmy Anderson.
Entry and car parking at Taunton Vale is free and plenty of seating is available at the ground.
A brief report will be posted at the end of each session and a round up of the days play along with quotes will appear on this site later.
Somerset host Lancashire in a three day match at Taunton Vale on Monday in their final pre-season match where play starts at 11am.
So far Somerset have enjoyed two full three day matches against Gloucestershire and Glamorgan, but the game with Lancashire, who were promoted back to the top division at the end of last season, is expected to be their biggest test so far.
Looking ahead to Monday’s match captain Chris Rogers said: “Lancashire gives us another opportunity for us to step up the intensity again and that’s going to be crucial in how we play.
“We are going to play with a high intensity this year and we are going to treat the game against Lancashire on Monday as the first game of the season and it will be an important one for us.”
The Somerset squad for the match includes Roelof van der Merwe, who will be playing his first game for the county since he was last here back in 2011.
Young all rounder Ben Green, who is currently on the Academy and played alongside Ryan Davies in the England side that took part in the Under 19 World Cup earlier this year, is also included in the squad of 13.