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Tom leads Somerset fightback on day two

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A partnership of 125 between Tom Lammonby and Azhar Ali got Somerset back into this LV= Insurance County Championship clash against Lancashire at the Cooper Associates County Ground.

It was very much needed because Somerset were forced to follow on after being dismissed for 90 in their first innings.

Lancashire began the day on 364 for eight, but Somerset quickly wrapped up the tail. First, Tom Abell produced a stunning slip catch to dismiss Jack Blatherwick and give Jack Brooks his fourth wicket, and then Marchant de Lange bowled Tom Bailey as the visitors were all out for 373 all out.

Unfortunately for the hosts, that was as good as it got in the first two sessions as Blatherwick finished with four for 28 and Tom Bailey three for nine to dismiss Somerset. Lancashire enforced the follow with the hosts 283 behind.

Whatever was said in the dressing room did the trick as Somerset were transformed, reaching 226 for four by the close. Tom Lammonby led the way, hitting a fluent 100, off 103 balls, with 12 fours and three sixes.

Somerset’s first innings saw Ben Green promoted to opener but he was bowled by the second ball of the innings, sent down by Bailey. By lunch, Lammonby, Abell and James Hildreth had also fallen.

George Balderson claimed two of the wickets before Blatherwick had Lewis Goldsworthy caught at second slip for 15. It was the first of six Somerset wickets to fall in the space of 46 balls for the addition of only 25 runs.

Former Notts seamer Blatherwick, 23, whose only other Championship appearance for Lancashire came in the rain-ruined Roses Match against Yorkshire when his side didn’t field, bowled with genuine promise.

Somerset adopted a positive approach to their second innings, Green and Lammonby putting together a stand of 69 in less than 12 overs with some fine attacking strokes.

On 31, Green was stumped and by tea, the scoreboard read 89 for one.

Lammonby played beautifully, reaching three figures with a straight six of Parkinson, only to fall lbw to another leg-spinner, Luke Wells, without addition.

First day centurion Wells then had Abell caught at mid-wicket and Azhar Ali stumped just after reaching fifty off 85 balls.

With his score on 11, Hildreth moved up to third place behind Harold Gimblett and Marcus Trescothick in Somerset’s list of all-time highest First Class run-makers, overtaking Peter Wight’s tally of 16,965, whilst Wells ended the day with figures of three for eight from seven overs.

Somerset will resume tomorrow still trailing by 57 runs, but in a much stronger position than supporters thought might be possible.

At the close of play, Somerset centurion, Tom Lammonby said: “We haven’t performed as well with the bat as we should have done in the last few games, and after the first innings it was shades of the same. We just wanted to turn that around and give it back to them a little bit and put our foot down.

“To reach a hundred was a good feeling but there was also a bit of relief too. On a personal note it was very pleasing for me, but I would have liked to score more for the team.

“It was important that we came out with greater intent in the second innings and put their bowlers on the back foot. There’s definitely still something in the pitch and if you work hard enough you will get your rewards. We definitely feel that we’re still in the game.”

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