Somerset Day. Ireland Day.........
By Grockle et al
May 11 2018

Happy Somerset Day one and all.  Hampshire are our opponents today at Taunton on a day when Ireland become a Test nation in more than just name as they take on Pakistan at Malahide. George Dockrell has unfortunately not made the side for their first game but will be there on the radio and we wish all Irish cricket players the best in a hard game.  Hampshire at Taunton?  Will we keep the momentum going?

v Hampshire CC1 @ Taunton Thursday 11 May 2018

Match Centre

CC1 match number 4, undefeated and in second place in the table with a game in hand.  Not the usual position we find ourselves in at the start of May.  Hampshire have not had as good a start to their four day tournament and come to us as possible underdogs.  We have been in that situation before and not done ourselves credit so let's NOT take this one as a done deal.

Somerset are not without their problems with Marcus Trescothick sidelined with a broken foot.  Eddy Byrom seems to be back in the frame and Tom Banton must be thinking he has a chance after his second team heroics with the bat.  Will Steve Davies continue to open after taking the place in the second innings and what will George Bartlett's debut century have done to his confidence?  Tom Abell may continue his now 'allrounder' status having performed with the ball in the Lancashire match at Old Trafford.

On the rest of the bowling front, there seems to be no sign of Dom Bess in any Somerset lineup after some suggested we ought to consider playing both spinners given the absence of Liam Dawson from the Hampshire side then he turns up and replaces Paul van Meerkenen with Josh Davey still out. Jamie Overton is also still not fit enough for first team action though there are suggestions that he may be back for the one day games coming up after this last CC1 game before the break for white ball fun.

So the Somerset side is:

Byrom, Renshaw, Bartlett, Hildreth, Abell, Davies, Gregory, Overton C, Leach, Bess, Groenewald

Somerset have won the toss and chosen to field first. As someone has pointed out, a strange decision when you pick a two spin attack in early May.  They may be expecting to bat only once. Over confidence? Well we shall see as the day moves on.

The objective is to maintain the forward motion of the county this season.  Our best start for a considerable time needs to be maintained if we are to be a force in 2018 CC1 (which would do us no harm at all).  Batting has been better than 2017 but still patchy and unpredicatable with a collapse never very far away.  Renshaw has been a bit of a revelation and cameos from Bartlett, Byrom, Abell, Trescothick and even Leach have kept us in games while the bowlers have gone above and beyond yet again to keep us in and this time win matches.

Hampshire even see themselves as weak.  Somerset MUST not.  We have been guilty before of letting sides off the hook or giving them opportunities to get back into games when we really shouldn't.  There is no room for this in a championship chasing county.  We have players coming in to make their mark and we have others who have shown form.  We need ALL of them to get it together, put Hampshire on the back foot and keep them there.  Somerset need the confidence going into the next stage of the season and they need to nail their colours to the mast for the resumption of the CC1 later so other sides see them as a side to watch rather than a side with fragility and the tendancy to take their foot off the gas and lose concentration. 

That can't be us this year, we've been there too long and have signs that it isn't going to be us in 2018.  Good luck boys.  Let's start Somerset Day as we mean to go on and turn this into Somerset's summer perhaps.