Somerset v Hampshire: Jack Leach helps Somerset gain upper hand against Hampshire

Jack Leach
Jack Leach took his eighth five-wicket haul in first-class cricket
Specsavers County Championship Division One, Cooper Associates County Ground (day one):
Hampshire 162: Bailey 49, Abbott 49; Leach 6-78, Bess 3-45
Somerset 157-5: Elgar 60, Abell 40; Dawson 3-48
Somerset (3 pt) trail Hampshire (1 pt) by five runs
Match scorecard

Jack Leach took six wickets to help Somerset gain the upper hand against Hampshire on day one at Taunton.

Spinners Leach (6-78) and Dom Bess (3-45) ran through the visiting team's line-up as they were all out for 162, with only George Bailey (49) and Kyle Abbott (49) resisting.

Dean Elgar (60) and Tom Abell (40) started well, but Liam Dawson (3-48) struck to give Hampshire hope.

But Somerset still ended the day on top at 157-5, trailing by just five runs.

Leach was brought on in the ninth over of the day and quickly made the difference, having Dawson (13) caught at mid-wicket by Bess before the off-spinner dismissed Michael Carberry (17) caught behind.

James Vince, Rilee Rossouw, Sean Ervine and Lewis McManus then all fell within seven overs, with Leach and Bess taking advantage of turn off the pitch and some poor shots.

Australian Bailey used the reverse sweep well and Abbott struck four sixes, but Leach sent both back to the pavilion to end the innings.

Abbott removed Marcus Trescothick early before Elgar and Abell looked to be putting Somerset well on top with a partnership of 75.

However, Dawson followed Leach's earlier example, dismissing both run-scorers and the dangerous Peter Trego to leave things more balanced and take the tally to 15 wickets on day one.

Somerset spinner Jack Leach:

"Maybe the day has finished slightly in our favour. It was certainly a wicket that helped the spinners. Bessie bowled brilliantly and Dawson too. It's always nice when you get a few wickets.

"As far as the wicket is concerned, it's important not to presume anything. It could get worse or it could improve over the next couple of days.

"We are closing in on their total and the remaining batsmen should take heart from some of the innings they played last year when the tail wagged."

Hampshire coach Craig White:

"It was an amazing day's cricket. There was certainly a fair bit of spin out there, but we are a little disappointed with the total we posted.

"Having said that, to get them five wickets down at the close, was excellent on our part. Had things have gone our way, it could have been seven or eight down.

"It's pretty tough to bat on it, but tomorrow is a new day. We need to have a good first hour and take sure that we are out there batting again as quickly as possible."

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