After a miserable start to the season, Somerset took 20 wickets in less than two days to back up their first innings 458 and kickstart their County Championship Division One season.
Blackbird was sung with real vigour for the first time in 2022 come 5.15pm after Leach wrapped up the final wicket – great to see England’s spinner back in the wickets at Taunton.
Today was a good day for Somerset, home and away, former spinner Dom Bess scoring 89 for Yorkshire as well as former Somerset 2s seamer Nathan Gilchrist taking wickets for Kent.
Somerset had lost their last seven County Championship matches, which last happened in 1960.
At lunch, 45-3, the Bears still needed another 204 to avoid an innings defeat and Somerset truly believed that tomorrow’s rain would not starve them of this much deserved victory.
But the home side did wrap this up with minimum fuss; Sam Hain the main obstacle who looked a class apart in the pre-season game here, in the first innings and again today until he pulled Gregory straight to Overton at a sort of leg gully, swallowed into his midriff. Skipper Rhodes had been bowled by Leach just the over before.
Two wickets lost on 89 blew the Warwickshire middle-order wide open. Though prompting a man who scored 170 and 178 in his previous two innings, Michael Burgess came out to join Matt Lamb.
A double wicket maiden for Jack Brooks in the 56th over just before tea at 3.30 on Saturday afternoon was probably the most important over of the match. He and Steve Davies combined for both Burgess and Briggs – a duck on his birthday for the latter, and 115-7 saw Somerset sniffing an extra 15 minutes before tea to wrap this one up.
They took one more before the delayed interval as Brooks continued to dominate the Bears in the afternoon session.
For the Somerset faithful seeing Jack Leach bowl economically from one end whilst the seamers rotated from the other was another great takeaway from a very positive three days at the Cooper Associates County Ground.
Interestingly the Jacks continued after tea, spearheads Overton, Gregory and Davey made to wait, Abell entrusting the two men who had bowled so well before tea. But Miles took a liking for Brooks, taking eight off his first over and six off his second after tea with shots all around the ground-splendid batting from the number 10.
Eventually Overton had Miles caught superbly low to his left by Renshaw. 41 the ninth wicket partnership. But Ollie Hannon-Dalby could not follow on his heroics from last week (His 94 minutes before he scored against Surrey this season broke the record for the longest time without scoring at the start of an innings in County cricket. He beat the 79 minutes of Jack Simmons for Lancashire against Yorkshire in 1969), Leach had Matt Lamb bowled at the other end for 40 before OHD could get off the mark (just faced four balls this time).
Swapping headsets for Pete Trego and Marcus Trescothick in the commentary box was a pleasure, it made quite fascinating watching sitting behind the two nattering on from cricket to pokemon.
Hobbies away from cricket for players usually range from golf to darts..but somehow talk digressed onto Trego’s searching for Pokemon at mid on after the conclusion of a county game…don’t ask..or if you are really keen then feel free to rewind to 12.29pm on day three of the Youtube stream.
It was interesting hearing Tres (England’s elite batting consultant) talking about watching all county games on live streams on his ipad, a lovely thought of the great man in his Trull home dialling in to action from Hove to Headingley.
He’s employed to do more than just look at batters’ score, but look at how and where they score them. Looking at what they are trying to improve on too. He did like to clarify that he is not involved in selection, so has no culpability for any criticism on that front. More in improving those whom England pick.
Of course he is often at the Cooper Associates County Ground still, even when not working he’s down here enjoying the cricket.
Jonathan Trott has also been here this week with Warwickshire of course. What an ‘old-boys’ XI we have had around the press box this week-who would not have paid to watch the three Ts (Trego, Trescothick & Trott) bat?!
Somerset take 23 points from the game, Warwickshire just two.