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MATCH REPORT: SOMERSET V YORKSHIRE CCC - CC - Day 1

— 10 September 2019

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Keshav Maharaj continued his stunning form with five more wickets as Yorkshire enjoyed the better of day one against Somerset at Taunton.

The South African Test spinner returned 5-54 from 23.5 overs to help bowl Somerset out for 199 in the first half of the evening before the visitors replied on 70-3 from 21 overs at close.

Left-armer Maharaj has now taken 33 wickets in four and a half Specsavers County Championship matches during his short-term overseas deal – this is his last before resuming international duty.

And his record against Somerset in Championship cricket is even more remarkable.

In five innings against them, both for Yorkshire and Lancashire dating back to last September, he has taken 26 wickets, including 10 in July’s win at Emerald Headingley.

Yorkshire struck four times in both the morning and afternoon sessions after Steve Patterson opted to bowl first on a used pitch.

Apart from turn, there were no other demons in the surface.

But Somerset will be frustrated at surrendering a number of their wickets, chief culprit amongst them being George Bartlett, who fell trying to reverse sweep the second ball after lunch against Maharaj.

He bowled unchanged from the River End from late morning onwards.

Patterson made the initial breakthrough in the 10th over when he forced Steve Davies into a loose drive to point, leaving the score at 18-1.

Olivier then struck twice in five balls in his first two overs to give the White Rose the early advantage.
He had debutant Indian overseas opener Murali Vijay caught behind and James Hildreth bowled through the gate (37-3 in the 18th).

Tim Bresnan was next to strike when he had Tom Banton smartly caught by Adam Lyth diving forwards from second slip after the ball had looped up off inside edge and pad as the score fell to 46-4 in the 23rd.

Then, immediately after lunch, came the dismissal which defied belief.

Bartlett tried to reverse sweep Maharaj, only to top edge it to Lyth at slip, leaving the score at 70-5 in the 31st over.

Ben Coad then had Lewis Gregory caught behind by Jonny Tattersall, standing up to the stumps, seven overs later – 85-6 – before Abell and ex-Yorkshire loanee Dom Bess (15) shared 45 for the seventh wicket.

Bess, however, chipped Maharaj to short cover as the score fell to 130-7 after 51. Shortly before, Abell had reached 50 off 124 balls.

Maharaj’s third wicket came in the form of compatriot Roelof van der Merwe lbw – 148-8 in the 59th before Abell and Jamie Overton shared 51 to recover things.

All-rounder Overton was capped by his county at lunch and dominated the partnership with 40 not out.

But Somerset missed out on a batting bonus point as Maharaj struck twice in three balls in the 73rd over to wrap up the innings. He had both Abell and Josh Davey lbw pushing forwards, leaving Yorkshire with 21 overs of batting to do.

Lyth pulled new ball seamer Davey for two sixes in three balls, the latter bringing up 10,000 first-class career runs for Yorkshire.

But he and opening partner Will Fraine both fell caught behind at the score slipped to 27-2 in the sixth.

Fraine was first to go against Gregory before Davey removed Lyth for 21.

Gary Ballance had made his way to 35 by the time he was trapped lbw by the off-spin of Bess in the day’s penultimate over (70-3).

Tom Kohler-Cadmore and nightwatchman Patterson will begin day two.

Somerset, meanwhile, are missing England Test bowling duo Jack Leach and Craig Overton and injured Jack Brooks (heel).

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