Allenby, Overton keep Philander at arms length
Nottinghamshire 57 for 2 trail Somerset 312 (Allenby 64, Overton 55, Philander 4-56) by 255 runs
Half-centuries from Jim Allenby and Craig Overton helped Somerset to a total of 312 on the first day at Trent Bridge. The experienced Allenby, short of runs so far this season, made 64, his highest score since moving from Glamorgan in the winter.
His efforts laid the foundation for Overton to replace him at the crease and plunder 55 runs from only 31 balls as Somerset collected three batting points. Nottinghamshire replied with 57 for 2 from the closing 24 overs of the day.
Vernon Philander enjoyed his best day with the ball for the home side, returning 4 for 56 against the side that he made a handful of appearances for in 2012. The South African pace bowler seemed to relish the opportunity of playing against former team-mates, under cloudy skies, after Chris Read had won the toss and asked the visitors to bat first.
Marcus Trescothick has seldom enjoyed his previous visits to this famous old ground, having failed to register a century in 20 first-class matches. His 33rd innings on the ground was typically brief, castled for 0 by a wonderful swinging delivery from Philander.
Somerset also lost Tom Abell during the early exchanges but approached lunch in better order before losing three wickets to the final 11 balls of the opening session. Two of those were taken by Steven Mullaney, including Johannes Myburgh for 49, as the bowler enhanced his reputation as a partnership-breaker.
That reputation, real or imaginary, prompted Read to turn to him again in mid-afternoon and again the allrounder delivered, bowling Peter Trego to end a stand of 85 in only 15 overs with Allenby. Overton made the most of some wayward bowling to plunder 11 boundaries in a quickfire 50 before being cleaned up by Harry Gurney.
Seven of Somerset's batsmen were bowled as Luke Wood collected two late scalps. The 19-year-old left-arm quick dumped Lewis Gregory on his backside with a well-directed bouncer before bowling him next ball, then wrapped up the innings by yorking Tim Groenewald.
When Nottinghamshire batted they lost the wickets of Mullaney, to Gregory for 19, and Greg Smith, on his county debut, who failed to make the most of his opportunity to step in for the absent Alex Hales by falling lbw to Groenewald for 8. Hales' weekend dash to join the Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League went unrewarded when he was left out of their final qualifying match against Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Somerset's Allenby, who scored 64 was pleased with his side's performance, saying: "Having got 300-odd, we felt that was over par - especially after we'd had a bit of a wobble in our last few games, so it was nice to get it right today in difficult conditions."
While - on his stand of 85 with Trego - he added: "Peter has been done it for years and I've found myself in similar situations so we just used our experience to make sure we kept scoring and we kept trying to capitalise whenever Philander wasn't bowling because it was a bit tricky out there. We dragged it back and obviously to finish up with Craig Overton getting 60 off just 30 balls finished our innings really well.''
While Philander was delighted with his four wickets for the hosts, he said: "It's obviously started pretty well for me this morning but we'd have liked to roll them out for cheaper than that but bowling them out for 300 on day one, we'd have taken that.''
On his swinging delivery to bowl Trescothick out, he added: "It's always good when you've played with guys like that to be able to get them out. Myself and Marcus have a good relationship, so it's always good to get your mates out.
"After lunch we bowled a little bit too short and Treego, Allenby and Overton played nicely but getting full bowling points we'd have taken that. We just need to bat well tomorrow."