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Somerset win again

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Somerset showed genuine grit and determination this evening as they maintained their push for a top four finish in the Vitality Blast South Group.

Although we were denied a grandstand finish due to late rain, Somerset secured a five-run win over Middlesex under the DLS method at the Cooper Associates County Ground.

The hosts lost Lewis Gregory to injury before the toss and they were bowled out for 152 in 18.1 overs after being put in.

Devon Conway continued his good form with 45 and Will Smeed made 33, while Dan Cullen picked up four for 32 and Steve Finn two for 16.

Middlesex had replied with 114 for six off 16 overs when rain prevented further play. Nathan Sowter was unbeaten on 37, while stand-in skipper Craig Overton claimed three for 28.

A seventh defeat in 11 group games ended the visitors’ hopes of reaching the knock-out stage.

Despite the early loss of George Bartlett, the home side prospered in the powerplay. Conway looked in great touch from ball one, which he cover drove for four.

The New Zealander uppercut a six off Tom Helm, while Smeed collected a maximum off Mujeeb Ur Rahman as they took the total to 53 for one after six overs.

Smeed then dispatched Cullen over mid-wicket for six before the the ninth over saw Conway run out by Stevie Eskinazi’s throw, sent back attempting a second run following Smeed’s pull to the mid-wicket boundary.

Conway’s impressive knock had come off 26 balls and his dismissal proved a major turning point. The next over saw Smeed caught at deep mid-wicket off Cullen, having faced 23 deliveries, and suddenly Middlesex took a grip.

From 95 for two in the middle of tenth over, Somerset lost eight wickets for 57 runs, Cullen leading the way by removing Lewis Goldsworthy, Ben Green and Marchant de Lange.

Overton fell for a first ball duck, but atoned in the opening over of the Middlesex reply by scattering Eskinaszi’s stumps.

Soon it was 15 for two as Max Holden skied an attempted pull off Jack Brooks, to Conway, keeping wicket following Tom Banton’s call into the England one-day squad.

Overton and Brooks shared the first six overs, which ended with Middlesex 45 for three, Overton having removed Joe Cracknell.

Marchant de Lange, Ben Green and Tom Lammonby then provided excellent support as Daryl Mitchell, John Simpson and Luke Holman perished to aggressive seam bowling on a pitch with plenty of pace.

Sowter did his best to revive Middlesex hopes, hitting a six off Max Waller and four fours before the rain intervened.

After the match, Craig said: “Obviously it was disappointing not to get the full match in, but we’ll take the two points. The way the boys fought in the second half to get those wickets was massive for us and shows the character of this side.

“Captaining in T20 is something that’s new to me. It was good fun but hopefully Lewis will be back soon.

“We got some good momentum at the moment and hopefully we can carry that in to the big games that we’ve got coming up.”

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Next MatchSomerset V Derbyshire Falcons

09/07/2022 19:00 - The Cooper Associates County Ground