Somerset regain top spot after Yorkshire collapse


Somerset 199 and 329 beat Yorkshire 103 and 127 by 298 runs

Story of the match: Somerset needed a half-century partnership for the 9th wicket to get to a slightly under par-looking 199. Yorkshire then collapsed in 14.1 overs from 70-2 to 103 all out. Solid contributions from each of Somerset’s middle order batsmen left Yorkshire an unlikely 426 to win.


One: What a difference a few hours can make. When, second ball after lunch on the first day, George Bartlett reverse swept Maharaj to slip, leaving Somerset 70-5, a spectator in the Somerset Stand bellowed across the ground at the batsman’s retreating form “you’re not fit to wear the shirt.” A rally left the hosts 199-8. “We’ll still not get a batting point,” grumbled one fan. This seemed overly pessimistic – only one more run was needed. But he was right.

At 11.42am on the second day, with the story of the match thus far Somerset 199 and 4-2; Yorkshire 103 talk was of whether Somerset would be deducted points for a poor pitch and lose out as a consequence in the championship race.

By mid-afternoon, talk was of whether Somerset would set a victory target of 500 and how were Essex doing?

Two: The answer to that latter question was pleasingly badly from a Somerset perspective.  The gloom mongers had now switched to dreaming once more of championship glory, maybe in thrilling fashion in the last game of the season, which so happens to be the home one against Essex. One of a group of fans postulated such a scenario, to be shot down by another of the group: “Don’t jinx it“. A third laughed – “it could all be over by then anyway if we win at Hampshire and Essex don’t beat Surrey.”

Three: Slightly lost in all this was the shortlist for the potential winner of this year’s county championship was being reduced from three to two, as defeat left Yorkshire unable to top the table. If Dom Bess is to win a 2019 championship medal, it will be with Somerset.

Four: An age-old argument with the county championship is: is it primarily there to serve the test team or is it a self-contained competition in its own right? If the former, then September matches on soft pitches like this one will do little perhaps to train and identify future test stars (or even help spot the current ones – Vijay made 7 & 0). But if the latter, then this was an intriguing game full of gripping cricket throughout both first innings. It only tailed off as a contest when Somerset began to pull too far ahead of Yorkshire in their second innings, but even then they did so in some style…

Five: Seven Somerset batsmen hit sixes in their second innings. Everyone whose score progressed beyond four runs got in on the act. Number nine Roelof van der Merwe twice reverse swept Maharaj for six in the same over; number ten Jamie Overton twice clonked Patterson back over his head for six.

Six: Overheard leaving the ground: “Be hard to have a decent open-top bus parade with all these flipping roadworks” – the optimism and pessimism of a county cricket supporter in one sentence.


About Author

Comments are closed.