Nottinghamshire posted 429, the highest ever List A score at Taunton, before holding off a spirited Somerset chase to set up a Royal London One-Day Cup semi-final against Essex.
Somerset scored 405 runs off 48 overs in a dramatic run-chase but ultimately still fell short of Notts’ mammoth total.
It’s also the first time Somerset have conceded 400 from 50 overs at Taunton. Brendan Taylor surpassed his List A best of 145 with his scintillating 154 from just 97 balls as the records tumbled.
Dean Elgar top scored in the chase with 91 and Peter Trego made 66, while many others chipped in, but no one else spent quite long enough in the middle to see Somerset to their most unlikely of chases.
Jamie Overton was named as key man in our preview due to his ability with the ball but nearly won his side the game with the bat having failed to do so so desperately in the Championship against Yorkshire yesterday. His 40 off 26 balls nearly pulled off the unthinkable, only to end in a run out trying to get back on strike.
With the ball, Jamie Overton’s first over (the second of the match) went for 20. Promptly replaced by Lewis Gregory to bowl the third from the river end, he too was hit to the boundary off his first delivery, meaning all of Somerset’s first three bowlers had suffered that fate.
Notts took 79 off the first ten overs, Riki Wessels and Michael Lumb making sure it really was a powerplay period. Lumb was the early destroyer, but he was caught in the first post-powerplay over, at cover off Roelof van der Merwe.
Wessels’ biggest six came in the 17th over off Tim Groenewald, smearing him above the players’ balcony on top of the Andy Caddick Pavilion. Just as the negativity of the Somerset contingent of the press box reached fever pitch, wesselmania, was ended. Adam Hose dived forward well at mid-off giving Groenewald the prize scalp, concluding a sublime 81 off 62 balls.
Six maximums and sixteen fours came off the first 20 overs and the Outlaws were 156/2. When all thought Samit Patel and Taylor would then rebuild, they simply carried on exactly as Lumb and Wessels were, stroking the ball to the boundary with unbelievable ease.
When Patel departed, Mullaney came in and carried off exactly where Patel had left off, striking at nearly 200 for most of his innings. Taylor brought up a sumptuous century off only 69 balls. Soon after, Steven Mullaney fell to another catch in the outfield, meaning all the first four wickets fell to average deliveries which really should have gone to the boundary.
Billy Root comparatively struggled early doors, confirming the surprise that Chris Read had not sent himself or James Pattinson in for a last eight over whack. Dropped off his 85th ball, Taylor scored another 29 off his next 12 balls. His eventual wicket triggered a minor collapse at Taunton. Three wickets fell on 410, Gregory taking three in four balls. He vastly improved his figures from his last three overs working his way up to final stats of 4-60. Only Pattinson below number five got double figures, but the Outlaws won’t complain after scoring a remarkable 429/9.
Johann Myburgh started the Somerset reply with a bang, 14 off the first over, hitting 10 fours in his first 16 balls faced. But when he was bowled by an in-swinging Harry Gurney yorker, the out of form Steven Davies came and went quickly and Jim Allenby never got his strike rate above 100 before getting out much the same way as his wicketkeeper.
Elgar was dropped by Pattinson at mid-on having scored just two with Somerset 77/3, then was dropped again off Pattinson’s bowling by Read when on 17 and just chipped over mid-off on 18. He made the most of his fortune and reached 50 off 33 balls after 18 overs.
Somerset were well up with the rate at 172/3 after 20 overs, incredibly ahead of where Notts were at this point.
Having hit 16 off Patel with two monstrous sixes, Trego tried one shot too many and holed out at deep mid-wicket for 66 off 47.
Hose, van der Merwe, Gregory and Craig Overton all seemed to believe while they were still out there, but that belief was severely dented when Elgar was bowled for 91 by Broad and even more severely so when van der Merwe fell with Somerset on 335.
Yet still the game was not over, Somerset continued to refuse to lie down. Groenewald and Jamie Overton put on 41 for the final wicket, getting it down to 24 required off 2.1 overs only for a run out mix up to cruelly finish their remarkably ambitious run chase.
Nottinghamshire will meet Essex in Friday’s semi-final at Chelmsford.