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Somerset secure six-wicket win over Devon

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Max Waller, Andrew Umeed and James Hildreth were the standout performers as Somerset claimed a six-wicket victory over Devon in this National Counties fixture at Bovey Tracey CC.

Essentially, this is a fixture with a history that stems back to the very inception of Somerset CCC in 1875, and the two counties have developed a fruitful and mutually beneficial relationship over the years.

However, following Sunday’s victory over Cornwall in Truro, Somerset were keen to maintain their 100% start to this year’s 50-over campaign, and another thoroughly professional performance saw the visitors do just that.

Waller claimed four for 29 whilst both Hildreth and Umeed made half centuries as Somerset reached their target of 182 from just 31.4 overs.

Devon won the toss and elected to bat first.

The hosts started well, and a flurry of boundaries through the off-side saw James Horler and Sam Read race to 23 off just 17 balls.

However, Kasey Aldridge made the initial breakthrough with the final ball of the third over when Read (8) was caught behind by Steve Davies.

After 10 overs, the hosts were 51 for one.

Horler and Elliot Hamilton shared a stand of 50 for the second wicket but their partnership was ended in the 17th over when Kasey Aldridge took an excellent diving catch off Alfie Ogborne at deep point to remove Hamilton for 22.

The score had advanced to 90 when Matt Renshaw had Ben Beaumont caught behind for 12 off the final ball of the 22nd over, and 90 for three soon became 92 for four when Elliot Staddon was trapped lbw by Max Waller without troubling the scorers.

The hosts reached triple figures from the penultimate ball of the 25th over and Horler secured his half century from 74 balls.

Waller struck again in the 31st over when Ed Middleton was caught behind for 13 at 127 for five and then again in the 33rd when he trapped Matt Skeemer lbw for two at 135 for six.

Horler eventually fell for a fine 83, caught behind off Jack Harding in the 41st over to leave Devon on 167 for seven. His innings came from 110 balls and included 10 fours.

Waller was a constant thorn in the side of the host county, and he ran out Kaz Szymanski for 11 in the in the 43rd over, and when a direct hit from James Rew from point ran out Will Christophers Devon were 179 for nine from 44.4 overs.

Max Shepherd was the last man to fall, Waller again claiming the wicket, as Devon were dismissed for 181 from 46 overs.

The Somerset reply began brightly as Steve Davies and Matt Renshaw added 50 from just 6.2 overs, but the Australian opener sent a straightforward return chance to Szymanski and departed for 23. Davies and Andrew Umeed added 13 but the veteran ‘keeper was bowled by Szymanski for 35.

Umeed and James Hildreth brought up the Somerset 100 in the 17th over and the 150 up in the 26th.

Hildreth was the first to reach his half century from 49 balls with Umeed reaching the landmark, his first since joining the County, from 79 deliveries.

The pair shared a stand of 102 which broke the back of the run chase and by the time Hildreth fell for 57 the scoreboard was showing 165 for three.

Although George Bartlett fell with the scores level, James Rew collected the single that Somerset required for victory with Umeed unbeaten on 57.

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