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LV= Insurance County Championship Preview: Middlesex v Somerset

THE MATCH

Somerset travel to Lord’s this week to begin the 2021 LV= Insurance County Championship season with a match  against Middlesex which gets underway at 11am tomorrow (Thursday).

THE 2021 COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP EXPLAINED

HOW CAN I KEEP UP TO DATE?

You can keep up to date using our dedicated Match Centre via this website and on our Twitter feed.

In addition to this a report on the day’s play along with quotes will be posted after the close.

HEAD TO HEAD

The two sides have faced each other on 163 occasions in First Class cricket. Somerset have triumphed in 25 matches, Middlesex have won 85 times whilst 53 games have been drawn.

The highest team total in the series for Somerset is 850 for seven declared at Taunton in 2007, while for Middlesex it is 600 for four declared in the same match.

The highest individual innings for Somerset is the 315 that was scored by Justin Langer at Taunton in 2007, while for Middlesex it is 258 by Mike Gatting at Bath in 1984.

The best bowling for Somerset is nine for 38 by Raymond Robertson-Glasgow at Lord’s in 1924, while for Middlesex it is 10 for 42 by Albert Trott at Taunton in 1900.

The last time the two sides met in red-ball cricket was at the Cooper Associates County Ground in 2017 when Somerset came out on top by 231 runs.

Somerset won the toss and batted first.

56 for Eddie Byrom and 41 for James Hildreth helped to ensure that the hosts posted a first innings total of 236 all out. Ravi Patel was the pick of the bowlers, claiming seven for 81.

The visitors were then dismissed for 142. Jack Leach took four for 54 whilst Craig Overton claimed three for seven.

Batting for a second time, Somerset declared on 250 for nine. James Hildreth once again impressed, making 109 whilst Patel (five for 92) was again the best of the Middlesex bowlers.

Leach was again the destroyer in chief for the home side as his five for 57 helped to ensure that Middlesex were all out for just 113. Roelof van der Merwe also weighed in with four wickets.

TEAM NEWS

Somerset will name a starting XI from the following squad: Tom Abell*, George Bartlett, Tom Banton, Eddie Byrom, Josh Davey, Steve Davies, Marchant de Lange, Lewis Gregory, James Hildreth, Tom Lammonby, Jack Leach, Craig Overton and Roelof van der Merwe.

VIEW FROM THE DRESSING ROOM

Ahead of the match Somerset Head Coach, Jason Kerr said: “Whilst it was disappointing not to win the Bob Willis Trophy at Lord’s last year, I think we played some brilliant cricket there. We have some recent fond memories of the ground too of course. If we play the brand of cricket that we did there in September, then that will definitely stand us in good stead for this game.

“Middlesex are a very good side, and they will also be looking to start the season well. Everyone wants to hit the ground running, so there will be a few nerves around both camps.

“Whenever the fixture list comes out you look for the fixtures at Lord’s. It’s one of the best, if not the best, ground in the world and everyone wants to play there. There’s an air around the ground of the unbelievable legends who have gone there before you. The lads are excited to get the first game of the season underway and to do it at Lord’s is extra special.”

DID YOU KNOW?

James Hildreth needs 120 runs to overtake Bill Alley as Somerset’s fourth highest ever run scorer in First Class cricket.

The last time that Somerset played Middlesex at Lord’s in the County Championship Lewis Gregory scored a career best 137 in the first innings.

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Next MatchLeicestershire V Somerset

22/04/2021 11:00 - Grace Road