Four for Kasey but Notts fight back on day one


Kasey Aldridge proved to be a more than adequate replacement for injured Somerset skipper Lewis Gregory but Nottinghamshire battled back well on the opening day of this Vitality County Championship Division One match at Trent Bridge.

Olly Stone’s unbeaten 74 led the recovery from 190 for seven to 326 for eight by the close of play. He shared an eighth-wicket stand of 112 with Calvin Harrison to give the day a different complexion after Joe Clarke (51) and Jack Haynes (55) had put on 108 for the fourth wicket but been unable to kick on.

Aldridge was the main architect of a Nottinghamshire mid-innings collapse that saw four wickets fall for 11 runs, and finished the day with four for 90 whilst Migael Pretorius took three for 73.

Earlier in the day, a wicket apiece for Aldridge, Craig Overton and Pretorius with only 111 runs on the board had made for a reasonably satisfactory morning’s work for Somerset after Nottinghamshire skipper Haseeb Hameed had chosen to bat first.

Overton, skippering in the absence of Gregory, should have had a second, but Haynes was dropped at first slip on 19. Earlier he had bowled Hameed with an inswinger of full length, which had been the only breakthrough until Ben Slater and Will Young departed to consecutive deliveries around 20 minutes into the second hour.

Pretorius removed Slater courtesy of a spectacular catch from James Rew diving to his right to snaffle a faint glance.

An Aldridge inswinger beat Will Young to bring more disappointment for the New Zealander, whose unbeaten 174 against Somerset on his county debut at Taunton in April remains his only notable score.

After lunch, Haynes struck three more boundaries, lifting his tally to nine and taking him to a 52-ball half-century. Clarke completed his own fifty soon afterwards, from 75 balls with his 10th four, but was immediately out, finding Tom Banton at cover as Aldridge gained a second success.

As happened in the first session, one wicket prefaced another. Pretorius produced a beauty to have Haynes caught by Overton at slip. With the Somerset seamers suddenly now in the ascendancy, two more wickets followed, both to Aldridge, who found some bounce from the Stuart Broad End to have Tom Moores caught at gully and Lyndon James behind the stumps as Nottinghamshire, 179 for three before Clarke’s demise, slipped to 190 for seven.

However, if Somerset thought they were into the tail as Stone emerged from the pavilion, the 30-year-old pace bowler was to disavow them of that notion. On a surface beginning to flatten and, for the next 30 overs, against an increasingly aging ball, he and the leg-spinning all-rounder Harrison constructed an impressive recovery, assembling the biggest partnership of the innings.

It was Stone who took on the leading role with his half-century coming off 89 balls. Harrison made 35 before he was bowled by Pretorius in the 10th over with the new ball, before Dillon Pennington picked up three boundaries of his own to leave Nottinghamshire needing 24 more in 14 overs for a third batting point.