Double ton for Abell sets up victory for Somerset Seconds

AbellSecond XI Championship – Somerset Second XI v MCC Universities – Taunton Vale, July 29 – August 1, 2014

Somerset Second XI 157 (Dibble 37, Sakande 4-57) and 470-8 declared (Abell 205 not out, Myburgh 98, Meschede 82, Davey 33, Sakande 3-123) beat MCC Universities 287 (Qureshi 88 not out, Stewart 3-36, Dibble 3-59) and 153 (Thompson 55, J Overton 6-38, Dockrell 3-23) by 187 runs

Somerset: 21 points, MCC Universities: 7 points

Tom Abell continued an incredible run of form by making an unbeaten 205 to set up a championship victory for Somerset Second XI against MCC Universities last Friday.

Abell spent almost seven hours at the crease, facing 305 balls and hitting 24 fours and one six. His innings comes on the back of the 94 he made in a one-day 50 Over Trophy game for the Seconds against the Unicorns last week as well as two other scores of 70 earlier in July. The 20-year-old also currently averages a staggering 151 for his club side Taunton CC this year.

With Jamie Overton taking six wickets to bowl Somerset to victory, the result – which is the Seconds’ third championship win of the season – takes Somerset to second place in the table, just three points behind leaders Essex.

The game started very differently though, as Somerset were bowled out for just 157, Abidine Sakande taking 4-57. That they managed that many was largely thanks to Adam Dibble who came to the crease at 120-8 and proceeded to make a run-a-ball 37 with eight fours before being run out. Six other batsmen made it into the teens, but no-one could push on and make a score.

The students then posted a first innings total of 287, achieving a first innings lead of exactly 130. Uzair Qureshi made a studious 88 off 164 balls with 12 fours to provide the backbone of the innings. There were three wickets a piece for Dibble and Callum Stewart, two for Josh Davey and one for Tim Rouse.

Somerset got off to the worst start second time round, losing skipper Chris Jones without scoring, but then Abell and Johann Myburgh set about reducing the deficit and establishing a lead. In all they shared a 166-run partnership for the second wicket in 45 overs.

The partnership was broken when Myburgh fell just two short of his century. He had faced 139 balls and hit 16 fours. Equally importantly he had proved his fitness after injury forced him out of the first XI after a solid start to the LVCC County Championship. Having available for selection going into the final round of the championship, not to mention the Royal London Cup, will be a huge boost for Somerset.

Abell then shared a useful partnership with Josh Davey who made a near run-a-ball 33. Craig Meschede then joined Abell at the crease. The pair put on a huge stand worth 190 in 37.4 overs. The partnership was finally broken when Meschede was bowled for 82 off 147 deliveries. He had hit eight boundaries.

Abell shared a further partnership of 35 with James Regan (16) and when he reached his double century, Jones called time with Somerset on 470 for 8 dec off 105.4 overs.

The Universities side were set 340 to win, but despite 55 from opener Thompson, they were unable to contend with Overton who removed two top-order batsmen and then ran through the tail, finishing with figures of 6-38 off 17.4 overs. George Dockrell, who’d lost his place in Somereset’s Royal London One Day Cup side to Jack Leach, took 3-21 off 21 economical overs, including 12 maidens and there was a further wicket for Dibble.

The students were all out for 153 in 67.4 overs and lost by a comprehensive margin of 187 runs.

Somerset took 21 points from this game and the Universities side took 7.

The Seconds are currently away in action in another three-day championship match against Gloucestershire 2nd XI at Taunton. The match started on Monday and is due to end on Wednesday evening, August 6. Play starts each day at 11am.

Later in the week, at 12 noon on Thursday August 7, the Seconds will also take on Gloucestershire 2nd XI at Taunton, this time in the 50 over Second XI Trophy competition.

We’ll include a full report of both games on the InCider.

Teams:

(In the Second XI Championship, teams can select more than 11 players, but only 11 of them can bat and 11 can field, so for Somerset, Leach, Dockrell and Overton bowled and fielded at various times during the match, but did not bat, and for MCC Universities, Abidine Sakande bowled and fielded, but did not bat).  

Somerset Second XI: CR Jones*, TB Abell, JG Myburgh, JH Davey, JE Burke, CAJ Meschede, JA Regan+, TD Rouse, AJ Dibble, ORT Sale, CM Stewart, MJ Leach, J Overton, GH Dockrell

MCC Universities XI: H Thompson, SG Leach, JL Sterland, JAM Johnson*, UA Qureshi, DM Endersby, M Burgess+, BM Akram, AC Soilleux, DW Foster, JSE Ellis-Grewal,A Sakande

Scorecard: http://totalcricketscorer.com/TCSLive/TCSScorecard.aspx?id=26065

Second XI Championship table: http://www.espncricinfo.com/county-cricket-2014/engine/series/715725.html?view=pointstable