Somerset 268 (Bartlett 55, Finn 5-77) and 104 for 4 need a further 103 to beat Middlesex 357 and 117 (Overton 5-34)
Craig Overton and Josh Davey sparked a dramatic Somerset resurgence on the third day of the LV= County Championship match with Middlesex at the Cooper Associates County Ground.
When the home side could add only 90 to their overnight score of 178 for 4, Steve Finn finishing with 5 for 77, they conceded a first-innings lead of 89 runs. But Overton, with 5 for 34, and Davey, 3 for 28, skittled Middlesex for just 117 in their second innings, leaving a victory target of 207. By the close, the hosts had posted 104 for 4, with skipper Tom Abell unbeaten on 43.
At the start of the day, Somerset were forced to call Jack Brooks into their team as a Covid replacement for Lewis Gregory.
Bartlett and Lewis Goldsworthy extended their fifth-wicket stand in Somerset's first innings to 90 before Tom Helm had Goldsworthy caught behind for 39. Bartlett went to fifty, off 107 balls, with 10 fours, but fell to Helm on 55, nicking a drive to wicketkeeper John Simpson.
Steve Davies was caught at backward point off Finn, who struck again when Davey clipped a leg-side delivery to fine leg where Helm took the catch.
Overton played sensibly for his unbeaten 38, receiving good support from Jack Leach in a ninth-wicket stand of 39. But Finn forced Leach, on 16, to fend a catch to short leg and Brooks quickly fell to the second new ball, taken by Tim Murtagh.
The afternoon session began with Middlesex 11 without loss. Sam Robson and Max Holden took the score to 44 before a brilliant Tom Banton catch at backward point in Davey's first over saw Robson depart for 18. Nick Gubbins was dropped by James Hildreth at first slip in the same over. But soon it was 48 for 2 as Holden edged Overton through to Steve Davies.
The Somerset wicketkeeper held another catch when Peter Handscombe feathered an Abell outswinger and notched his 600th first class victim when Gubbins chased a wide ball from Davey.
The probing Davey then had Simpson taken at third slip by Abell before Martin Andersson was caught and bowled off a leading edge by Overton. When Robbie White was pinned lbw on the back foot by Overton, the visitors had lost seven wickets for 38 runs. At tea, they were 85 for 7 and led by 174.
Overton struck twice more in the final session for well-deserved match figures of 8 for 94 and Somerset looked favourites.
An absorbing match took another twist when Murtagh bowled Banton with the first ball of Somerset's second innings and then trapped Tom Lammonby lbw for 9. But Abell and Hildreth prospered in the early evening sunshine, Hildreth looking in prime form until falling to Andersson for 43 after a stand of 78, before nightwatchman Leach departed to the final ball of the day.