Essex end Somerset winning run

A second half century in two days for Devon Conway wasn’t enough to prevent Somerset from falling to a six wicket (DLS) defeat to Essex Eagles at the Cloudfm County Ground in the Vitality Blast.

The New Zealander scored 53 from 47 balls but Michael Pepper scored his maiden Vitality Blast 50 for the hosts as Essex claimed an important win.

Simon Harmer claimed four for 24 as Somerset were restricted to 153 after being put in on a hybrid pitch being used for the fourth time.

The visitors, on the back of chasing down 168 without losing a wicket against Kent Spitfires the previous evening, started off with stands of 30, 31 and 46 as they reached 77 for two at the half-way point – with Tom Banton caught at mid-on and Will Smeed sweeping Harmer to the square leg boundary.

South African Harmer then grabbed three wickets in an over – Lewis Goldsworthy caught at midwicket, Tom Lammonby lbw and Lewis Gregory chipping into the leg side – as Somerset lost seven wickets in 26 balls.


Ben Green skied Aron Nijjar, Craig Overton edged to short third man, Marchant de Lange was caught by Pepper running in from long on and Conway picked out deep midwicket. From the last ball of the innings Sam Cook bowled Max Waller.

After a delayed start to the chase, Wheater and Will Buttleman were both dropped before another rain break saw an over chopped off and the target revised to 148.

The rain subsided and Buttleman drilled to backward point and Dan Lawrence fluffed his slog to long off to leave Essex in danger of collapsing on 35 for two.

However, Wheater and Pepper recovered and reached a 50 stand in 31 balls.

The partnership was eventually ended when Wheater was caught at short cover for 49, before de Lange pinned back Jimmy Neesham’s leg stump.

Pepper was dropped with 15 still needed before cutting to bring up his fifty and Ryan ten Doeschate hit a six over long on to win the match.

At the end of the game, Somerset Head Coach, Jason Kerr said: “It’s been a very disappointing evening. 13 overs in we are 107 for two with a really good platform to go big at the back end of the innings. But to lose four wickets in the space of seven balls and six wickets in five overs is unacceptable. We were 20 or 30, maybe even more, under par. Guys need to take responsibility in the middle which didn’t happen this evening.

“We showed a lot of character to take it deep, but we ultimately didn’t have enough runs.

“If you look at the way we’ve played over the last four games they have been very different and we have found ways to win games. We are evolving and getting better but tonight was a bad one for us.

“It’s important that we learn from every game, whether we win or lose, and take those into our next game.”


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