Trego the star as Somerset win the derby!
Somerset began their Vitality Blast campaign in style with a rousing six-wicket win over arch-rivals Gloucestershire at the Cooper Associates County Ground.
A sell out crowd saw the visitors post 188 for six after losing the toss, Ryan Higgins leading the way with 55 off 35 balls and Jack Taylor contributing 34. Roelof van der Merwe was the pick of the Somerset bowlers, conceding only 22 from his four overs.
In reply, Steve Davies (60) and Peter Trego (72 not out) set about the Gloucestershire attack with a blistering second-wicket stand of 90 in 7.1 overs to lay the foundation for a convincing victory with 19 balls to spare.
Gloucestershire were never able to go into overdrive on a true pitch, losing wickets at vital times. Somerset conceded 20 off the final over and were grateful to see Tom Abell take a brilliant diving catch at wide long-on to end Higgins’ entertaining knock.
The late blast took Gloucestershire to a reasonable total, having been 158 for five at the end of the 18th over.
Miles Hammond, Michael Klinger, Benny Howell and Ian Cockbain all got starts only to surrender their wickets for scores of less than 23 as Somerset rotated their bowlers constantly.
It took a fifth-wicket stand of 58 in less than six overs between Taylor and Higgins to guide Gloucestershire to respectability. However, the entire innings featured only three sixes.
The second over of Somerset’s reply saw Davies spilled at deep square by Higgins off Liam Norwell, the ball dropping over the boundary for six. Davies then took a four and another six off the next two deliveries.
Higgins then held a catch in the deep to dismiss Johann Myburgh off David Payne, but Gloucestershire’s problems worsened when Norwell, his season already ravaged by injury, hobbled off after bowling only three balls of his second over.
Davies and Trego piled on the pressure with some savage strokeplay, taking Somerset to 94 for one off seven overs by smiting 53 off 18 balls, sent down by Howell, Thisara Perera and Tom Smith. The half-century stand occupied just 25 deliveries.
Davies went to 50 off 21 balls with a six off Howell in the eighth over, also bringing up the hundred and Gloucestershire needed a miracle.
Higgins had Davies caught on the deep-square boundary, but there was no let-up as James Hildreth smashed Payne for six and collected another maximum off Tom Smith with a reverse sweep.
Hildreth fell for 25 to another big swing, but Trego moved to fifty off 30 balls and Corey Anderson (24) helped see Somerset home.
After his Man of the Match performance Peter Trego said: “I don’t think it gets any better than this for us, especially at the start of the tournament.
“You always go in and wonder where your form is and you do everything that you can in the nets, but it means nothing until you get your first score. Personally, this gives me a lot of confidence and the team a lot of confidence moving forward. It wasn’t just myself, it was Steve Davies, Corey Anderson and James Hildreth. When they came in they were all striking the ball so beautifully and that sets us up well.
“I thought that we did a decent job with the ball. It looked like a 190 wicket, so I think we did well to restrict them to just under that and then to chase it in that style was brilliant.
“Our preparation has been fantastic and that showed tonight.”
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