Nottinghamshire v Somerset, Trent Bridge, 3rd day September 26, 2013

Tension eases with positions secure

ESPNcricinfo staff

Nottinghamshire 406 and 139 for 3 (Mullaney 59) lead Somerset 372 (Hildreth 161, Compton 87, Gurney 5-81) by 173

Nottinghamshire and Somerset continued to make the most of batsmen-friendly conditions after learning that their Division One status had already been preserved for another season.

Both sides would still have been vulnerable if Derbyshire had been able to win their final contest but as news filtered through of their defeat to Warwickshire, 17 miles away, attention returned to matters at Trent Bridge with a sixth-place finish up for grabs.

Somerset collected four batting bonus points after reaching 372 in their first innings, with James Hildreth eventually falling for 161 and Harry Gurney returning career-best figures of 5 for 81.

Beginning again, Nottinghamshire batted positively in advancing to 139 for 3, an overall lead of 173, with Steven Mullaney making a quickfire 59 for the hosts

Hildreth had earlier passed 1,000 first-class runs for the season during his stand of 248 with Nick Compton, who was eventually bowled by Samit Patel's quicker ball for 87. Gurney, who had removed Marcus Trescothick the previous evening, boosted his own tally of wickets after the second new ball had been taken.

Its first victim had been Hildreth, caught behind off Luke Fletcher - presenting Chris Read with his 750th catch for Nottinghamshire and a dismissal that heralded the start of three wickets falling in a seven-ball spell.

Jos Buttler was then trapped lbw by Gurney for 13 and left the field without any obvious farewell gestures, despite the rumours of an impending move, before the left-arm fast bowler also removed Craig Meschede. Lewis Gregory chanced his arm in making an undefeated 40 which included an uncontrolled pull for six off Brett Hutton, but then ran out of partners as the innings was wound up.

Peter Trego guided Gurney into the hands of point and the bowler's first Nottinghamshire five-wicket haul and his 100th first-class scalp was Alfonso Thomas, well caught at slip by Riki Wessels.

Mullaney set the tone for Nottinghamshire's second innings, racing to a half-century in just 38 balls, with 11 fours but then drove Trego to mid-off. Wessels and Michael Lumb each added 20 but the day had a slightly curious ending as Craig Kieswetter removed the wicketkeeper's pads to have a bowl but Trescothick - rather than Buttler - put them on for the final five overs.

With both sides locked together on exactly the same number of points - Somerset having won one game more this season - Nottinghamshire will need to force the win on the final day of the season to go ahead of their west country rivals.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • David on September 27, 2013, 15:02 GMT

    Can't understand why Notts didn't declare on reaching 400-8. This would have given them a 2 point bonus point gain, meaning that Notts would be guaranteed survival if they bowled Somerset out for less than 400 and went on to draw the game. By batting on for a few more runs, all tey did was gift Somerset an extra bonus point. As it is, Derbyshire's demise means that survival is assured regardless but a draw means Somerset will finish above Notts as a result of that extra bonus point.

  • John on September 27, 2013, 8:51 GMT

    @markatnotts on (September 27, 2013, 8:27 GMT) Sorry , I meant Taylor (not Swann) - Swann was at Northants and was not in the same position as Taylor and Broad were at Leics. Yes , people move for different reasons but I still feel sorry for Leics as it seems to be a vicious cycle in that they will always find it hard to get out of div 2 if they can't keep their best players. Maybe cricket is becoming/will become like football where the bigger cluns hold the power

  • Mark on September 27, 2013, 8:27 GMT

    Why would Leicstershire feel any sadness about Graeme Swann not playing for them? He has as much connection to the county as I have. Your right about Broad though. Incidently some people have to move county yo improve their game. Harry Guerney wouldn't be playing championship cricket if he stated at Leicestershire. That is why he left them.

  • John on September 27, 2013, 7:48 GMT

    @ landl47 - Craig did start with the gloves at the beginning part of 2007 whereas Jos debuted at the latter part of 09. While I wouldn't say that Craig was a wk veteran etc it has only been since the start of 2013 when Eng replaced Craig with Jos that there have been any murmurs of discontent from Jos at not keeping wicket. So that's a full 6 seasons where Craig has been thee man with the gloves and only 2 full seasons has Jos even been his deputy. Not sure if Jos has always been listed as a WK but if so I think that's because he was something he could do. Tres is listed as a bowler but when does he bowl these days? Yes , I think better to keep Craig - I think he has more commitment to the club even if he is less talented. It's dissappointing to lose a homegrown player in this way but I guess that's the way of the world. Now I realise more how Leics must feel in losing Broad and Swann.

  • Mark on September 26, 2013, 21:45 GMT

    Anyway for the game today. Well done Notts and Mr Gurney in particular for earning a first innings lead. Not that it matters but Somerset at one point looked like getting a handy lead with perhaps embarrassment for Notts and another feckless collapse. All in actually he has flogged his guts out all year and although 40 odd wickets at 32 doesn't sound so much to write home about, he has played 14 of 16 games and also turned out in the majority of white ball games. All in a vastly improving cricketer and a good team man.

  • Mark on September 26, 2013, 21:34 GMT

    Well said CricketingStargazer, although I am going to go off ons tangent here relating to an intriguing comment made by someone else yesterday. That is certain players being monitored by the ECB regarding fitness, diet etc. I find this disturbing as I know far too much "strength and conditioning" for fast bowlers involves weight machines in the gym. This is not the best approach. Such machines don't train muscles in natural ways as the movements are not dynamic. Fast bowling is best served (Mr Holding is an expert on this) by interval sprints, some weights such as bench press at low weight and high rep, and most of all just bowling. I suspect this problem is not limited to England however.

  • John on September 26, 2013, 21:11 GMT

    @JG2704: replying to your post to me of yesterday, in your (understandable) efforts to be loyal to Somerset you're making it sound as though Kieswetter is a 35-year old veteran whom the club is allowing to finish his career in the position he has made his own and Buttler is not really a WK at all, just an opportunist trying to sneak the gloves as a way to get into the England team. Neither is true: Kieswetter is 25, only 3 years older than Buttler, and Buttler has been listed as a WK ever since he made his debut. I don't think they're close as WKs; I've been impressed by Buttler (I even commented on it in the CT, a post which ESPNcricinfo featured) while Kies is basically a stopper.

    If both want to be WKs, then one has to leave. Your comment here is one with which I have every sympathy, but I don't see how Somerset keeps both. Think of it this way: if Buttler gets a central contract he'll be lost to Somerset anyway for all but a couple of games a year. Maybe better to keep Kies?

  • John on September 26, 2013, 20:00 GMT

    @Derek Grabham - Re "Why did the club try hard enough..." - I presume you mean why didn't the club try hard enough and the 2 you are referring to are Jos and Craig? I would have thought they have tried hard enough and it's such a complex situation. I also get the feeling (and it guts me) that Jos no longer wants to be at the club and the club could keep moving the goalposts to suit him and he'll always keep wanting extra. They could go the whole hog and offer him the gloves full time in which case that would almost certainly be Craig gone which is a gamble in itself and then you're banking on Jos still staying at the club down the line? So we could lose both players by trying to keep one happy. In terms of talent I'd rather keep Jos but in terms of commitment I think I'd rather keep Craig. It's starting to remind me of football re bigger clubs , more clout etc. Sad times

  • Dummy4 on September 26, 2013, 17:56 GMT

    Trescothick, not Buttler, has kept wicket in the last five overs. This tells us Buttler is leaving the club, probabaly to Lanky Lancashire. Why did the club try hard enough to ensure both players stay on our squad for 2014 season. I don't get that.

  • Mark on September 26, 2013, 17:44 GMT

    As it happened, a draw would have been enough for both teams even if Derbyshire had won. A high-scoring draw was not an unexpected result and this looks like it will be one because there is little incentive to make a game of it tomorrow.

    Neither of these sides deserved to go down, although both need to heed the lessons of the season and reinforce their squads to avoid a repeat next season.

  • No featured comments at the moment.