Somerset announced the following squad to take the short trip up the M5 to play at Bristol: Allenby (c), Gayle, Trego, Jayawardene, Myburgh, Hildreth, van der Merwe, Gregory, C Overton, J Overton, Waller, Groenewald, Davies (wk), Arafat
The first surprise of the night came with the final team selection as the players who made way were Hildy, Cove and Maxi Waller – the last one probably the biggest surprise of all.
Umpires: Nick Cook and Neil Mallender
The full scorecard on Espn Cricinfo here
It was a packed County Ground in Bristol, a record crowd for Gloucestershire.
The home side won the toss and elected to field first.
- After a delayed start the action started at 7:05pm with Gayle having the audacity to play out a maiden off Taylor first up. But captain Allenby hit the first ball of the 2nd over and Gayle was soon in his stride also Norwell to the fence to make his mark
- The 3rd over was more like it! Allenby struck one four and Gayle two off Taylor and the two were getting going. When Gayle hit Norwell for a six and four off the last two balls of the 4th over bowled by Norwell Somerset were 35-0.
- Gayle then struck Tye for a four and six and the visitors were 48-0 off 5 overs. By the end of the Powerplay this had moved onto 55-0. But Gayle’s cameo would be over 2 balls later when he was c Klinger b Noema-Barnett for 40 hitting 6×4 and 2×6 in the process. 55-1.
- Trego’s time at the crease was short but action filled. He hit Benny Howell for 2 sixes but lasted only 6 balls when he was second man out c & b Smith 15. 78-2 now. At the half way stage it was 83-2 and evenly matched.
- Mahela Jayawardene has struggled for runs so far. He was recuced to a few singles and I four early on but when skipper Allenby was out after 11.3 overs c Taylor b Tye 27, the game needed someone to take charge. 94-3.
- Myburgh and Jayawardene were getting bogged down and after 15 overs the batting side were 117-3 and needing something big to happen. It did, but not to their benefit as these two both departed with 3 balls of the 16th Jayawardene was c & b Howell 24 then Myburgh departed c Cockbain b Howell 8 and the innings was in some disarray at 117-5.
- There were only 2 runs from the 17th before Gregory struck Tye for six but this offered scant hope. Roleof van der Merwe hit the last two balls of the innings for six and four to take Somerset passed 150 but it didn’t look enough. The innings ended on 154-5.
- There was immediate joy for Somerset when Marshall was out bowled by Yasir Arafat for 0 with the first ball of the innings. Only 7 runs were scored in the first 2 overs so the away team were fighting.
- Then Cockbain hit Gregory for 2 four’s before Klinger struck 3 in Tim Groenewald’s first over. Gloucestershire now 32-1 off 4 overs.
- The next wicket would fall with the first ball of the 6th over when Cockbain was out, c Gregory b Overton 23. 40-2.
- There would be more than 7 overs bowled before another wicket fell and , in that time, Klinger had established himself at the crease nearing a very good fifty. Dent was bowled van der Merwe for 22 and Gloucester looked set at 103-3 after 12.3 overs.
- VDM was battling hard for his team and he twisted things Somerset’s way in the 15th over with 2 wickets in 3 balls. First Howell was bowled for 1 then Noema-Barnett went c Overton b van der Merwe 0 and the home team were foundering on 111-5. Come on Somerset!
- With Klinger at the crease Gloucester were favourites but Somerset took control when Gregory bowled him for an excellent 60 runs. He hit 5×4 1×6 but his team were 127-6 now needing 31 runs required from 20 balls. This was Somerset’s to lose now, surely?
- The 18th over bowled by Arafat went for 7 runs – including 2 leg byes – 23 runs were needed from 12 balls. Gregory went for just 9 so Gloucestershire needed 14 off the final over to be bowled by Arafat.
- Tye hit the first for six before 5 singles were run in the next 3 balls. With the home team needing 3 from 2 balls Roderick hit Arafat for four and the game was won with a ball to spare.
Gloucestershire (2 points) beat Somerset (0) by 4 wickets
Man of the Match: Michael Klinger (Gloucestershire)
Reaction: Somerset fans were obviously bitterly disappointed to lose to the local rivals with many taking to Twitter to vent their anger. Yasir Arafat seemed to be the man most blamed for the defeat as it was he who bowled the deciding last over. But in truth it was a poor batting performance and the players didn’t grab the game by the neck. It will be interesting to see who plays next time around. Max Waller is always miserly with his four overs normally going for 20-25 runs per game. And what about James Hildreth? Why not open with him to nurdle it for 50-60 runs at one end while the big-hitters take the battle to the bowlers at the other? I have heard worse ideas!