Last week saw the four Somerset Seniors sides win all their games which included some outstanding performances.
Top of the shop must be Brian Hamer of the 70s who hit a magnificent 121 against the reigning National Vase holders, to go along with his equally impressive 92 the previous week. Form like this must be catching the attention of the England selectors.
The pertinent history to this meeting was that the last game between these 2 counties came in the final last year – when Devon won in a canter after Somerset struggled against their bowling attack. With that in mind and the fact that Devon team contained 10 of that winning side, Somerset had a few ‘Demons’ to try to overcome! Invited to bat first the platform was set with an opening partnership of 71 between Hamer and Andy Taylor and built upon by a stand of 155 between Hamer and Steve Sheppard. The final total of 269 for 3 must have been daunting.
Faced with a run rate of over 6.5 a strong start was needed but tight bowling by Dave Foster (8-1-27-0) and Phil Webber (8-1-36-1) put Devon even further behind and, despite three scores of 50 in their innings, they fell 74 runs short. There is no record of the comments made on their decision to put Somerset into bat! Scorecard Available Here
Both the 60s 1sts and 3rds had games that went down to the wire. The 1sts were set a challenging 214 for 8 against Devon, in whose innings Nick Virgin was pick of the bowlers when taking their first 3 batsman in a spell of 9-0-30-3. He was well supported by Ian Thomas with 2 for 32 off his 9 overs. The reply was dominated by a fantastic innings of 109 not out by last year’s skipper, Simon Hogg, which included 11 fours and two sixes from the 119 balls he faced. His stand with Graham Bishop (44) broke the back of the chase but there was a flurry of late wickets with the finishing line in sight and the winning run was struck off the final ball. Scorecard Available Here
The 3rd XI played Buckinghamshire and were put in the field. Bucks final total of 200 for 6 was kept in check by some excellent bowling, led by Andy Carson who ended with the excellent figures of 9-1-22-2 and Kevin Dornan with 9-1-34-1. On a hot day Somerset could have been chasing more. The reply got off to a perfect start as Andy Carson (48) rounded off a great all-round display by opening the batting and putting on 105 with Rick Hutchinson (42). This broke the back of the chase and, despite a couple of wickets falling, Somerset reached their total with an over in hand. Scorecard Available Here
The 2nds had a much easier time of it against Cornwall who were invited to bat first on a green pitch. Cornwall struggled to make much headway against an accurate attack of which Dave Wilcox starred with figures of 9-3-21-3, supported by Steve Shepherd with 9-2-26-2. With all the other bowlers keeping it tight the eventual total of 170 for 8 seemed not to be too challenging. This proved correct as openers Julian Harvey and Richard Walker set about the opening attack with panache, with 28 coming off the first 4 overs (Cornwall had taken 13 to reach the same score). It was a disappointment when Walker had to retire hurt for 33 off 24 balls but this brought together a partnership between Chris Brewer and skipper Miles Richards who knocked off the remaining 122 runs in 21 overs. Both struck the ball well, ran judiciously and ended on the same score, 54 not out. Scorecard Available Here