Eckersley apologies for 'abject' display
Somerset 122 for 1 (Trego 71*, Cooper 43*) beat Leicestershire 120 (Gregory 3-26) by nine wickets
Peter Trego hit 71 off just 31 balls, including six sixes, as Somerset thrashed Leicestershire by nine wickets. The visitors took just 14.5 overs to reach their target after bowling out the dispirited Foxes for 120 in 39.4 overs, but despite finishing the competition with three impressive wins, Somerset could not qualify for the quarter-finals.
Trego said winning the toss and bowling first on a green-tinged wicket in cloudy conditions had been "huge". "As soon as we walked in this morning it was obviously a bowl first wicket, and then the sun started to come out when we batted but you have to make the most of the conditions, and the bowlers did that - Tim Groenewald, Josh Davey and Lewis Gregory were flawless in their opening spells, they put Leicestershire under the pump and they were unable to recover," said the all-rounder.
Groenewald had already seen Angus Robson dropped at point when the opener edged behind off Davey, and two balls later the young seamer pinned Lewis Hill leg before with a ball that both seamed and kept a little low.
When Niall O'Brien hung out his bat at Groenwald and edged to Trego at second slip Leicestershire were 6-3, and Gregory made sure they did not recover by having Aadil Ali caught at first slip with an out-swinger before knocking out Dan Redfern's off-stump with a pacy delivery that swung back in to the left-hander.
Acting captain Ned Eckersley fought his way to 29, but that was Leicestershire's top score.
Left-arm fast bowler Atif Sheik had Adam Hose caught behind with a lifting delivery when Somerset began their reply, but Trego's brutal knock ensured there were no further wobbles, as Somerset added Leicestershire to recent victims Surrey and Yorkshire.
"It's been one of the frustrations of the season that as a team we've really clicked when we've been able to concentrate on white ball cricket, but when you throw some pretty gritty four day games in amongst it, the team has found it difficult to transition from red ball to white ball cricket," said Trego.
"It's disappointing because in the last few games we've really shown what we can do. Hopefully the wheels are turning at the top and next season the structure will change."
Eckersley said his team had to apologise to "anyone who came to watch". "It was a pretty abject display with the bat and with the ball and in the field, the whole display just wasn't good enough. It's a changing room that's hurting because that was not a representation of where we want to be or what we are as a club," he said.