Somerset v Yorkshire: Day 3— 15 April 2014
Half-centuries for Johann Myburgh, James Hildreth, Craig Kieswetter and Lewis Gregory helped Somerset enjoy a profitable third day with the bat at Taunton as Yorkshire’s victory push was halted.
Adil Rashid last night admitted that Yorkshire were happy with their position in the match at halfway with Somerset on 166-3 replying to 450.
But now, the best the White Rose can hope for is an opening round LV= County Championship draw, which looks the most likely result.
The home side’s quartet of fifties on day three added to Chris Jones’s day two 75, and they gained a first-innings lead midway through the evening session before closing on 530-9 from 153 overs.
Myburgh top-scored with 91 off 153 balls, his best in county cricket, while Gregory’s 91-ball 69, including two sixes, was a career best. Somerset lead by 80.
Conditions have largely favoured the batsmen throughout this match, none more so than today when there was very little swing or seam movement on offer.
Much like yesterday, Yorkshire’s bowlers deserved more reward for their toil. But that means credit must go to Somerset, who batted with plenty of application.
Ryan Sidebottom and Steve Patterson were metronomic, none more so than immediately after lunch when they shared five successive maidens with Somerset on the cusp of avoiding the follow-on at 277-5, while Liam Plunkett was again hostile.
He hit Kieswetter on the helmet following a similar blow to opener Jones yesterday, and finished with figures of 4-108 from 26 overs.
Hildreth and South African Test player Alviro Petersen advanced their fourth-wicket partnership to 72 this morning before Kane Williamson had the latter caught behind by Andrew Hodd, leaving the score at 208-4 in the 73rd over.
Hildreth passed 11,000 first-class runs on the way to 67 off 104 balls, but he fell lbw playing to leg against Jack Brooks as lunch approached. That left Somerset 252-5 in the 84th.
Kieswetter and Myburgh dug in immediately after lunch to repel Sidebottom and Patterson, but the former pulled Brooks for six to ensure his side passed 301 and avoided the follow-on.
It was the first of two sixes in a 111-ball fifty for the wicketkeeper-batsman, who also lofted Adil Rashid over long-on before slashing Williamson to Adam Lyth at first slip, where he took a sharp catch. Kieswetter fell for 63 with the score at 364-6, ending a stand of 112.
By that time, Myburgh had also reached his fifty – off 111 balls – and both sides have missed out on bonus points. Yorkshire finished with only one bowling point to add to their five with the bat.
Like Kieswetter, Gregory hit two sixes, both over long-on against Rashid and Lyth either side of tea as he and Myburgh shepherded their side to a lead.
Gregory reached his fifty off 68 balls before Myburgh was trapped lbw playing back and to leg against Rashid nine short of his ton. That left Somerset at 464-7 and ended a seventh-wicket stand of 100 inside 21 overs.
Gregory then fell to the first ball of the 143rd over, Plunkett’s first delivery of a new spell, when he edged behind down the legside with 490 on the board.
Plunkett then had Alfonso Thomas caught behind before Craig Meschede, the third Somerset player to hit two sixes, took his side beyond 500 for the first time since 2012 with his second maximum. Meschede finished on 45 not out.
Half-centuries for Craig Kieswetter and Johann Myburgh have frustrated Yorkshire this afternoon as Somerset, replying to 450, reached tea on day three at Taunton on 394-6 from 121 overs.
Kieswetter hit 64, including two sixes, and Myburgh will begin the evening session on 65 not out with Lewis Gregory for company on 22.
The only Somerset wicket to fall this afternoon was that of Kieswetter, caught at slip by Adam Lyth off Kane Williamson’s off-spin – the New Zealand overseas player’s second wicket of the innings.
Kieswetter and Myburgh, who came together before lunch, shared a sixth-wicket stand of 112.
Ryan Sidebottom and Steve Patterson shared five maidens on the trot immediately after lunch before the home duo ensured they passed the follow-on target of 301 with only five wickets down.
Yorkshire are still very much in the hunt for an opening week LV= County Championship victory against Somerset at Taunton having taken two wickets during the morning session of day three.
Replying to Yorkshire’s 450, the hosts have reached lunch on 277-5 having started the day on 166-3.
Kane Williamson and Jack Brooks have been the White Rose wicket-takers this morning.
Williamson struck with his off-spinners two balls into his spell to get Alviro Petersen caught behind after the Soyth African had shared 71 for the fourth wicket with James Hildreth, who made 67. That left Somerset 208-4.
Brooks then had Hildreth lbw with the second new ball, leaving the hosts on 252-5 in the 84th.
Yorkshire may have too much to do to have the option of enforcing the follow-on – they need to bowl Somerset out for 301 or fewer to have that option. But there are still five sessions left in this match.
Craig Kieswetter and Johann Myburgh are unbeaten on 23 and 16 at lunch.