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Five for Jamie on day two

Jamie Overton claimed five wickets to help Somerset gain a narrow advantage on the second day of this Specsavers County Championship match with Hampshire at the Cooper Associates County Ground.

The 25-year-old finished the day with five for 66 from 21 overs as the visitors closed on 329 for eight, trailing by 79. Visiting skipper Sam Northeast made 101 and Ajinkya Rahane scored 55.

Overton’s figures included a spell of three for 10 from six hostile overs at the River End with the second new ball, sending back Keith Barker (38), James Fuller (37) and Kyle Abbott to tilt the contest Somerset’s way.

Earlier, Northeast had claimed his century off 167 balls, with 13 fours and a six, sharing stands of 101 with Rahane and 82 with Rilee Rossouw, who contributed 44.

Hampshire began the day on 15 for one in reply to 408 and soon lost Joe Weatherley, caught behind down the leg side off Overton for 14.

However, with the pitch offering little in terms of seam movement or spin, it was soon clear that Somerset would need to work hard for their wickets.

By lunch Northeast and Rahane had taken the total to 105 for two and the afternoon session saw both reach half-centuries.

Jack Leach broke the partnership when Rahane edged a drive to Lewis Gregory at slip.

Dom Bess, making his first Championship appearance of the season for Somerset was understandably delighted when claiming the wicket of Northeast, who drove a catch to short mid-wicket soon after completing his hundred.

It was 220 for four and in his next over, with five runs added, Bess struck again, pinning Rossouw lbw on the back foot.

Barker and Fuller then took the total to 288 for five when the second new ball was taken for the 81st over.

From 306 for five, Hampshire then plunged to 314 for eight as wicketkeeper Steve Davies took three catches in quick succession off Overton, one of them down the leg side to dismiss Fuller.

All Overton’s victims were caught by Davies, who now boasts the most dismissals by a keeper in the First Division of the Championship this season with 34.

With his team trailing by 94 runs, Tom Alsop, who injured a hamstring wicketkeeping on the first morning, limped out with Ollie Soames acting as his runner.

In glorious sunshine, Alsop and Mason Crane batted out the day against Leach and Bess, who ended with two for 57 from 17 overs, to leave the match intriguingly poised after two days of absorbing cricket.

At the end of the day Jamie Overton said: “It was hard work for both the seamers and the spinners out there today, and it hasn’t done a massive amount. You had to just keep running in, keep building pressure, bowl dot balls and get the pressure that way.

“I was trying to do something different and make something happen and then I got my reward coming back in my later spell.

“It was good to see Dom coming back after his loan spell and taking wickets. Both him and Leachy bowled well for us today.

“It’s starting to spin a little bit more, so fingers crossed it keeps going. Hopefully we can get the last two wickets early tomorrow and then build a big lead and give ourselves the last day to have a real good go at them.

“It’s been a pretty good day and I feel like we’re just about on top.”

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