Tom Abell struck an accomplished century and Peter Trego a typically combative 94 on the opening day of the Specsavers County Championship Division One match against Warwickshire at Edgbaston.
Abell made 104, his second First Class hundred, from 180 balls and hit 12 fours and a six as Somerset posted a total of 295.
Somerset’s bowlers then applied pressure of their own, reducing Warwickshire to 27 for two at the close of a captivating day’s cricket in front of a very good-sized crowd in Birmingham.
Having lost the toss, the home side were delighted to remove powerhouses Marcus Trescothick and Chris Rogers in the first hour. Between them the veterans had visited the crease 1,300 times before in First Class cricket but they were soon back in the hutch after Barker hit Trescothick’s off-stump and had Rogers caught-behind.
Abell and James Hildreth steadied the innings with a partnership of 56 in 12 overs before the latter was caught by Sam Hain at short-leg off Boyd Rankin for 38.
When Jim Allenby slashed Barker to gully, Somerset were wobbling at 117 for four but Trego dug in to help add 110 for the sixth-wicket.
Abell reached his century with an all-run four in the last over before tea as Somerset recovered to 210 for four at the tea interval. However, the opener’s departure soon afterwards triggered the loss of four wickets for 38 runs in ten overs.
The 22-year-old fell lbw to a good ball from Jonathan Trott, Lewis Gregory had his middle stump uprooted by Woakes, Ryan Davies edged Rankin to second slip and Craig Overton clipped Trott to short mid-wicket.
Trego sought to accelerate to his century but was trapped lbw by Woakes who had Jack Leach pouched at first slip next ball.
Somerset thencame out firing with the ball as Ian Westwood fell lbw to Gregory and nightwatchman Rankin was brilliantly caught by Hildreth at leg-gully off Craig Overton.
After the close of play Tom Abell said: “It has been a pretty tough day for us to be honest and I thought that they bowled pretty well. There is certainly a little bit in it for the seamers so it was a real challenge throughout the day.
“I thought we applied ourselves pretty well and we had to ride the storm at times and stick in against their bowlers. We had a couple of decent partnerships and overall we feel pretty happy with the days work.”
Talking about his own innings Tom said: “It’s an incredible feeling to score my second hundred for Somerset and having Tregs at the other end was a very special moment for me. Last year when I got my first hundred I was with Tres and this time it was Tregs to help me. To have guys like these at the other end is a great help and he was awesome.
“I cant speak highly enough of the likes of Hildy and Tregs who took a fair bit of pressure off me. When the going was tough they put it back on the bowlers and allowed me to go about my business.”
Regarding Somerset’s bowling this evening he said: “There is certainly something in it for the seamers and we thought we had a good chance of getting some wickets tonight so to get two like we did has kept us right in the game and was the icing on the cake.”