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Report: Day One Yorkshire vs Somerset

— 29 August 2018

Scorecard

A quartet of contrasting half-centuries from James Hildreth, Azhar Ali, Steve Davies and Lewis Gregory gave Somerset the advantage during the opening day of the Specsavers County Championship clash with Yorkshire at Emerald Headingley.

Captain David Willey elected to bowl upon winning the toss and saw the visitors close on 374-8 from 96 overs.

Brooks finished with figures of 4-103 from 25 overs against the county he will join this winter, although Willey also impressed with 2-66 from 23.

After Somerset decided against bowling and opted to toss, both sides were happy with the outcome.

And Yorkshire would have been delighted when Willey and Brooks struck with the new ball to leave the visitors at 5-2 inside eight overs.

Play started under overcast skies, although gave way to sunshine.

Former Pakistan captain Azhar top-scored with a patient 89, while Hildreth’s 81 saw him pass 16,000 career runs.

They shared 137 for the third wicket either side of lunch.

Watch highlights from Day 1 of Emerald Headingley

But it was Davies and, in particular, Gregory who changed the course of the day after tea as they advanced from 229-5 after 69 overs.

They shared 114 inside 18 overs and attacked with gusto against the hard working hosts.

Davies hit 80 and all-rounder Gregory played the innings of the day, finishing with 65 off 46 balls.

Brooks, who announced on Monday he is Somerset bound on a three-year deal, made the initial breakthrough when he had Ed Byrom caught behind fending at a short ball in the fifth over.

In the eighth, Willey forced Marcus Trescothick to edge a loose drive to second slip by Adam Lyth.

Hildreth counter-attacked at the start of his innings and reached 50 off 56 balls before being dropped at square-leg on 75 by Matthew Fisher off Brooks shortly after lunch.

Although that only cost Yorkshire six runs, it unfortunately wasn’t the only drop of the day as Josh Shaw spilled Gregory on 45 running around from deep cover off Harry Brook late in the day.

Willey removed Hildreth, caught at first slip, as the score fell to 142-3 in the 41st over.

Brooks then had captain Tom Abell caught behind by Andrew Hodd as the score fell to 170-4 in the 55th.

Hodd returned to the first team for the first time since May following a back spasm for Jonny Tattersall.

There was definite help on offer for Yorkshire’s four-pronged seam attack, although batting became easier after lunch.

However, when Azhar was bowled off his pads by Shaw, Yorkshire would have been pretty happy at 229-5 after 69 overs.

But the game was about to get away from them.

All-rounder Gregory, who smashed a blistering T20 Blast half-century against Notts at Taunton on Monday to take his side to Finals Day, continued in the same manner.

He launched his second ball for six over long-on off Lyth and hit three maximums in a 32-ball half-century, following Davies to the same milestone.

The latter fed on anything short and wide, cutting and driving particularly well.

Brooks returned with the new ball to end to dismiss them both in the 87th over – Gregory caught at deep mid-wicket and Davies at cover, leaving the score at 343-7.

Shaw then had Craig Overton caught behind shortly afterwards.

But the visitors will be happier given they were invited to bat.

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