Home cricket Recent Match Report – Somerset vs Gloucs Group 2 2021

Recent Match Report – Somerset vs Gloucs Group 2 2021



Somerset captain’s unbeaten 132 sets up declaration before visiting seamers strike

Gloucestershire 16 for 2 trail Somerset 300 for 8 dec (Abell 132*) by 284 runs

Even when Somerset are in the mire and he has to work hard for every advantage there is an elegance about Tom Abell‘s batting. One notices it before he plays a stroke. The stance is balanced, poised, quiet. Abell holds the bat horizontally behind him, something that might appal the old coaches but which helps Somerset’s captain set himself for any shot he might have to play. Of necessity many of those shots were cautious on the third day of this game but when he played the leg glance or his signature clip off the hip backward of square one was reminded how many stylish strokes are not played on the posh side.

Abell’s achievement in becoming the first Somerset batsman to make a first-class century this season was all the more admirable because this had threatened to be Gloucestershire’s day. Chris Dent’s seamers had looked likely to claim almost all the laurels when they took four wickets in the hour after lunch, thus causing the visitors’ decline to 143 for 6, and it was not until late in the evening that Abell batted with a freedom he had not previously been allowed, either by the bowlers or by his own self-discipline.

By then, though, he had been joined by Lewis Gregory in an eighth-wicket partnership of 116 that changed the nature of a contest which seems likely to become a tussle for bonus points. Even the new ball brought Gloucestershire no joy for they bowled poorly with it and the scoring rate gambolled along at around four runs an over. Abell reached his century with a cover drive off David Payne and next over Gregory got to a 77-ball fifty that had included two colossal leg-side sixes off Matt Taylor.

Gregory had his off bail trimmed by Taylor when he had made 57 but any revenge was trifling. Next over Abell hit successive boundaries off Dan Worrall and immediately declared on 300 for 8, thus ensuring that Gloucestershire collected two bonus points while Somerset had three. And the opportunity to make inroads on Gloucestershire’s top order was seized in the first over by Craig Overton who hit Kraigg Braithwaite a fearsome blow in the box before having Dent caught at point by Lewis Goldsworthy for a first-ball duck. The long evening session got even better for Somerset when James Bracey’s drive outside the off stump to a ball from Josh Davey only feathered a catch to Steve Davies. If the forecast is correct and we get no more than a session’s cricket on the final day, the visitors now have a far better chance of adding bonus points than Gloucestershire and the precise value of such an advantage may not become clear until September.


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