wednesday 20th june - saturday 23rd june


Surrey won by an innings and 69 runs at Guildford


Surrey XI: Burns(c), Harinath, Borthwick, Patel, de Bruyn, Pope, Jacks, Clarke, Morkel, Dernbach, Virdi.

Cloud cover and a green-tinged pitch encouraged Somerset to bowl first and their seam attack kept plugging away in steamy heat.

But there was little to encourage their two England spinners Dom Bess and Jack Leach,

Burns and Harinath laid the foundations with an opening stand of 83 in 27 overs. Harinath pulled Josh Davey for six and was on course to celebrate his first Championship appearance of the season with a half-century when he was lbw to Tom Abell, playing across a straight one.

Burns continued his prolific form by taking his aggregate to 566 runs in a stand of 75 either side of lunch with Borthwick and it was a surprise when he was misjudged the line and was lbw to Lewis Gregory.

Borthwick drove confidently against the seamers on his way to a run-a-ball 50 and greeted Leach’s arrival into the attack just before tea by sweeping his second ball to the boundary.

It took a superb delivery from Tim Groenewald, which nipped back to hit off stump, to remove him for 68 and there was further encouragement for Somerset when they removed de Bruyn, who has been recruited for two Championship games, in the next over.

But Pope was soon in the groove as he became the second Surrey batsman to pass 500 runs this season. His first 24 runs came in boundaries as he put on 50 for the fifth wicket with Patel before Abell picked up his second wicket when Patel drove loosely and was caught behind.

Somerset took the new ball straight away but Pope reached a 60-ball half-century with his tenth boundary and Surrey’s fourth bonus point, which they secured in the last over of the day, took them two points above their rivals at the top of the first division.

Opener Ed Byrom, who held their reply together with a career-best 52, was lbw to his first ball offering no shot. In the same over Lewis Gregory was pinned in front and in his next over Patel struck three times in five deliveries.

Steven Davies was lbw to the first ball of the over, Josh Davey edged the fourth to Rikki Clarke at slip then Tim Groenewald was pinned in front trying to work the ball to leg. Jack Leach kept out the hat-trick delivery but needed treatment when he ducked into a short ball from Morne Morkel which necessitated a change of helmet.

Leach became Patel’s sixth wicket and fourth leg-before victim as Somerset conceded a first-innings deficit of 279. It was the best spell at Guildford since Jimmy Ormond took four wickets in five balls against Middlesex in 2003.

Following on, Somerset closed on 18 for 0 – still 261 behind – and they face an uphill battle to prevent Surrey deposing them as first division leaders.

Patel put the gloss on an excellent day for Surrey which had been shaped by two players – Ollie Pope and Rikki Clarke.

Pope continued the outstanding start to his career by scoring 117, his third century of the season and fourth in only his 12th first-class game.

The 20-year-old faced 134 balls and struck 19 fours but could do little when a delivery from Groenewald, who finished with 4 for 85, crept through. He added 60 for the seventh wicket with Clarke, who contributed a breezy 42 before he was last out.

Clarke then took three wickets in 15 balls to blow a hole in Somerset’s top order. Matt Renshaw (39), who had been dropped twice, edged to slip, George Bartlett went for a duck and James Hildreth (2) was squared up and gave an easy catch to point as he aimed down the leg side.

Byrom and skipper Tom Abell fought back either side of tea to add 54 but Abell (26) feathered an out-swinger when Clarke returned to the attack. Clarke finished with 4 for 32 but he was eclipsed by Patel’s astonishing burst.

Jade Dernbach and Morne Morkel shared eight wickets as Somerset, who had followed on 279 runs behind, were bowled out for 210 in 61.2 overs to hand Surrey victory by an innings and 68 runs.

Only James Hildreth, who finished unbeaten on 89, offered prolonged resistance to a rampant Surrey seam attack.

They setup victory by taking five wickets in the first hour as Somerset, who resumed on 18 for 0, lurched to 69 for 5.

Morkel made the breakthrough with his first ball of the day, trapping Matt Renshaw lbw half forward for two. Dernbach then picked up the first of two wickets in his opening spell when George Bartlett (7) drove loosely and was caught behind.

Ed Byrom (19) could only fend off the next delivery – a well-directed bouncer from Morkel – to short leg then Dernbach pinned Tom Abell (5) deep in his crease.

Rikki Clarke had Steve Davies (9) held in the gully at which point Somerset had lost five wickets for 51 runs before Hildreth and Lewis Gregory dug in, either side of lunch.

They added 62 runs to raise Somerset hopes of a fightback before another well-directed short ball from Morkel broke the stand as Gregory edged low to Clarke at slip.

Dom Bess (6) played down the wrong line and lost his off stump to Clarke but Josh Davey gave Hildreth good support in an eighth wicket stand of 62, although Davey rode his luck. Surrey were convinced he had been caught behind before he had got into single figures.

Hildreth pulled off-spinner Amar Virdi into the adjoining road for six and coped well with Morkel’s express pace but he ran out of partners. Davey (21) eventually gloved another good lifter, this time from Dernbach, to wicketkeeper Ollie Pope and Tim Groenewald played on for a second-ball duck.

Morkel applied the final touch when Max Waller, batting as concussion replacement for Jack Leach, who had been struck on the helmet by the South African on the second day, edged another bumper to Pope. Hildreth hit 13 fours and faced 127 balls but lacked support against a Surrey side who look well equipped to end their long wait for the title on this evidence.

It was Surrey’s first victory at Woodbridge Road since 2002, another occasion when the club went onto win the County Championship.


Ryan Patel
Ryan Patel bowls during Day 3 of Surrey’s home fixture at Guildford, Surrey.


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