Jack helps Somerset wrap up victory at Guildford

A thrilling burst of three wickets in seven balls by Jack Brooks propelled Somerset towards a 102-run victory against Surrey at Guildford in the Specsavers County Championship which sees the team from Taunton return to the top of the Division One table.

Surrey were bowled out for 164 in their second innings, losing eight wickets on the final morning in just over an hour and a half.

The victory is Somerset’s fourth win from five matches this season, and takes them back to the summit with a lead of 15 points over second-placed Hampshire.

Fast bowler Brooks removed nightwatchman Gareth Batty and then claimed the prized scalps of Dean Elgar and England wicketkeeper-batsman Ben Foakes in a spell of 5-1-11-3 in the first 45 minutes of a final day that began with  Surrey, at 99 for two, needing another 168 runs.

Having slid to 120 for five as a result of Brooks’ triple strike, which gave him overall figures of five for 33, Surrey then took further heavy blows from seamer Tim Groenewald, who bowled Scott Borthwick for 45 with his first ball and followed up by pinning Will Jacks leg-before in his second over.

Left-hander Borthwick, who started the day on 35, was undone by a superb ball which swung back into him. Jacks, who made 0, had no answer to a nip-backer.

Brooks also found swing from the Railway End to undermine Surrey’s chase in spectacular fashion. Batty, who had begun by edging Brooks safely past third slip for four, was bowled aiming to pull a ball that was far too full for the shot.

Elgar was also bowled, off the inside edge for a third ball duck, as he tried to dig out a full delivery that curved back into him and Foakes, on two, nicked a lovely away-swinger and was brilliantly caught low down by Marcus Trescothick at second slip.

Groenewald picked up a third wicket when Rikki Clarke drove at an outswinger and edged to keeper Steven Davies, who took a good tumbling catch in front of first slip. The end was near for Surrey when Ryan Patel wafted a catch to gully later in the same over as he tried to engineer a stroke to keep the strike.

It was all over at 12.34pm when Morne Morkel lofted Craig Overton straight to mid off to go for two, giving the bowler figures of two for 59. Groenewald finished with three for 29. Somerset took 22 points from the match whilst Surrey take four.

After the final wicket fell, delighted Somerset Captain, Tom Abell said: “I just couldn’t be prouder of the boys, and this was a massive win for us. Surrey had eight Test players in their team, and after yesterday I would probably have preferred to be in their position coming into today.

“We said in the dressing room before play that if we bowled better than we did yesterday evening and started to build bowling partnerships then we could put them under pressure. That’s exactly what we did. The bowling unit were outstanding today, and as captain you know that they will give you everything.

“I also want to mention George Bartlett’s first innings hundred. His innings, and the partnership he had with Tom Banton, changed the game for us after being 30-odd for three. James Hildreth’s 64 yesterday was also an important innings too. He’s a class act and he’s done it time and again for us. His runs were worth a lot more in the situation of the match at that time.

“There’s another massive game now for us next week against Kent at Canterbury. We’ve got a little bit of momentum now and we’ve gone top of the table, but we have to keep that going. It’s another big challenge for us.”

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01/07/2022 18:15 - Lord's