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Somerset Record First Win in Almost a Year


At Taunton the home side were put in to bat by Warwickshire. Matt Renshaw got Somerset off to a great start with his innings of 129, his best for the county, as all the top four made half-centuries and then the tail wagged to take them up to a hefty first-innings total of 458. Oliver Hannon-Dalby took five for 89. Nathan McAndrew went wicketless on his debut for the visitors, but his 47 helped spare some of his side’s blushes after they had been reduced to 113 for seven. A reply of 209 meant they were forced to follow on. With Jack Brooks taking four for 44, Warwickshire struggled even more in the second innings, falling to 167 all out and defeat by an innings and 82 runs inside three days. After seven successive defeats and without a win since 9 May last year, it was a stunning and long overdue return to form for Somerset.


Put in to bat at Chelmsford, Northamptonshire made excellent progress thanks to Luke Procter, who made 113 (his highest score for the county), adding 105 for the ninth wicket with Gareth Berg, whose 75 was also his highest score for the county. A total of 390 took on greater significance when Ben Sanderson dismissed four of Essex’s top order for just 27 between them, though Alastair Cook battled away for 89 minutes for his 6. Shane Snater’s career-best of 79 not out wasn’t enough to prevent Essex from being forced to follow on after they were dismissed for 193. Paul Walter (93) top-scored in their second innings as Essex fought their way to safety as the game ended in a draw with them on 328 for nine.


A compelling game at the Rose Bowl ended in a draw when the weather intervened. Hampshire chose to bat first and were soon in deep trouble at 40 for five, but Nick Gubbins finally got some support from Felix Organ and then James Fuller (who made 55, his best score for the county) so he was able to finish on 101 not out in Hampshire’s total of 246. Hasan Ali continued his fine start to the season, picking up five for 45, while Jimmy Anderson took three wickets. Lancashire’s reply followed a similar pattern as they stumbled to 105 for seven before Phil Salt (55) and Tom Bailey (59) helped them up to 240 in reply. Keith Barker came into the game with 15 wickets already, and added five more at the cost of 67 runs. Gubbins helped put Hampshire in a strong position with his second century of the match (130) to take his side up to 344 all out, leaving Lancashire to chase a target of 351. They were 9 without loss, but the final day was lost to the weather.


Graeme van Buuren must have been pleased with his decision to field first against Surrey at Bristol when the visitors stumbled to 37 for three, but things soon turned round as Ollie Pope (84) added 151 for the fourth wicket with Jamie Smith. Smith then went on to make a career-best 234 not out in 430 balls, and added a county record 244 runs for the eighth wicket with Jordan Clark, whose 137 was his best score for Surrey. Bowled out for 603, Surrey then had to find a way to pick up twenty wickets. They didn’t get far as Marcus Harris (124) and Chris Dent put on 296 for the first wicket, before Dent went on to make 207 not out by the end of the third day, with Gloucestershire on 443 for two. The final day was washed out, saving the bowlers any more toil. Surrey remain top of the table, six points clear of Hampshire.


Daniel Bell-Drummond scored his second century in successive matches, making 109 at Headingley as Kent were bowled out for 291, with Haris Rauf taking five for 65. Yorkshire got off to a difficult start, falling to 23 for three before Dawid Malan (152) and Harry Brook came together, the pair adding 269 for the fourth wicket. Brook went on from there to make a career-high of 194 that will have caught the England selectors’ eye. Matthew Revis hit his maiden half-century (50) as Yorkshire reached a hefty 571 all out. Batting to save the match, Ben Compton fell seven short of a fourth century of his fine summer, while Grant Stewart’s 90 in a partnership of 166 for the seventh wicket with Ollie Robinson ensured safety of a draw for Kent. Nathan Gilchrist was out for his third successive pair, equalling the world record with six consecutive ducks (Charlie Shreck in 2015, Vic Cannings in 1957 and 1958, and William Worsley in 1907 are the only others to have achieved this feat in an English season).


In Division Two, Sussex took on Durham at Hove despite missing seven frontline bowlers through injury. Loanee Grant Stewart had also been recalled by Kent, so they were forced to bring in Aaron Beard from Essex and Mason Crane from Hampshire. The pair picked up five wickets between them to help dismiss the away side for just 223, despite a career-best 88 from Liam Trevaskis. Tom Clark took a career-best three for 21. Cheteshwar Pujara led the reply, making his second and higher double century (203) of the season, the third time he’s reached three figures in just five innings. Mohammad Rizwan also made his highest score for Sussex (79) as did Tom Alsop (66). Together, they helped Sussex pile up a formidable total of 538, with only Trevaskis’s five for 128 preventing it from being even worse for the visitors. An excellent opening partnership of 313 between Alex Lees (105) and Sean Dickson (186, his highest score for the county) more or less eradicated the arrears, and the match ended as a draw with Durham on 364 for three.


At Trent Bridge, Nottinghamshire fans finally saw the return of Stuart Broad, but it was another bowler who took the plaudits as Worcestershire were bowled out for 159. Dane Paterson finished with career-best figures of eight for 52. For a while it appeared that score might be almost competitive until a 27-ball unbeaten 45 by Broad took the home side up to 266 in reply. Adam Finch’s figures of three for 59 were his best for the county. Everything seemed to be going in the hosts’ favour until Ed Barnard came in and made a career-best 163 not out to see his side up to 339, setting a target of 233. Finch’s 33 was his best score, too. Broad and Luke Fletcher each took four wickets, while Paterson finished with match figures of ten for 117. Ben Duckett (78, his fifth successive innings of fifty or more) and Joe Clarke (61 not out) saw Nottinghamshire to a five-wicket win that put them eight points clear of Derbyshire.


Middlesex ran out easy winners over Leicestershire at Lord’s. Having chosen to bowl first, they dismissed the away side for just 149. A century by Mark Stoneman (108) was the biggest factor in their reply of 370, despite Ben Mike taking four for 15. Mike was left stranded on a career-best 99 not out as his side reached 272 in their second innings, leaving Middlesex to chase down 52, which they did without loss.


There was a gripping match at Derby where any of the four results was still possible until late in the match. Derbyshire chose to bat first and there would have been some surprise when Shan Masood fell for just 60 (with 713, he is the season’s leading runscorer, finishing two short of Nick Compton’s all-time record in April), but Brooke Guest hit 109 as the hosts made 368. In reply, Marnus Labuschagne led the way with his 130 that helped Glamorgan to a narrow lead of 19 runs. Suranga Lakmal took five for 82. Guest followed up his first-innings century with a career-best 138, adding 276 for the third wicket with Wayne Madsen (135 not out) as Derbyshire declared on 349 for three, setting a target of 331. With just 55 overs to bat, Glamorgan went flat out to chase it down, but with the fall of Michael Neser to make it 298 for six with 26 deliveries remaining they eased off and finished on 310 for eight.