LV= County Championship Division One Warwickshire v Somerset

LV= County Championship Division One Warwickshire v Somerset

Relegation contest is Somerset’s to lose

The third day of Warwickshire’s relegation battle with Somerset was a hard fought struggle, interesting and engaging but not exciting. Somerset fought hard to build a potentially match-winning lead with the home side trying and failing to work their way through the sometimes fragile Somerset batting. By the end of the day, Somerset were on 277-4, a lead of 300.

All this was played out (until late in the day) in bright autumnal sunshine and on a pitch that offered some slow spin but was generally a decent batting surface.

It was a morning of hard graft with the two Toms, Lammonby and Abell, having to retrieve yesterday evening’s poor start. From 13-2 ( a lead of 36), they ground their way to 78-2 at lunch off 44 overs in total, 36 in the morning session. Jayant Yadav bowled steadily and got some slow turn, exactly the role that Jeetan Patel played for the Bears for so many years. Tight bowling, efficient fielding and dogged batting made for interesting cricket.

As so often is the case, It was Oliver Hannon-Dalby who made the breakthrough, inducing an edge from Lammonby, with Rob Yates taking an excellent catch high to his left at first slip. Lammonby’s 40 had taken him 158 balls.

Tom Abell reached his fifty off 121 balls. He and George Bartlett were going along so steadily and securely that it was a real shock when Danny Briggs got a ball through Abell’s defensive push and bowled him. Abell’s 87 had come off 173 balls with ten fours. He and Bartlett had added 72.

After tea, Bartlett and Lewis Goldsworthy survived the new ball despite a few alarms when the persevering Hannon-Dalby and Mohammed Siraj beat the bat. George Bartlett reached his 50 off 154 balls before Danny Briggs dropped him off a not particularly difficult caught and bowled. By the close, Somerset were 277-4, a lead of 300, with Bartlett undefeated on 91 and Goldsworthy on 44.

A dry day is forecast for tomorrow so Somerset will be hoping that they can declare well before lunch and give themselves enough time to bowl Warwickshire out, a win that would go a long way to deciding the relegation battle.


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