Meschede stars for depleted Somerset

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Somerset’s youngsters piled further misery on bottom-of-the-table Durham in the LV= County Championship Division One clash at the Emirates Durham ICG.

With only 11 fit men, Somerset included five players aged no more than 20 and one of them, Craig Meschede, enjoyed career-best performances with bat and ball.

In his 10th first-class appearance, the Johannesburg-born all-rounder took 3-26 with his seam bowling and then changed the game with a 45-ball half-century.

By the time he departed for 62, Meschede had shared a sixth-wicket stand of 107 with Craig Kieswetter. Somerset reached 220 for eight, a lead of 95, when bad light ended play.

Craig Meschede

After claiming 3-26, Craig Meschede impresses with the bat as Somerset took control of their LV= County Championship clash with Durham

The game looked evenly balanced when they were 65 four at tea in reply to 125, but the visitors added 155 in the evening session, with Kieswetter finishing unbeaten on 60.

Durham, with only one batting point this season, lost their last seven wickets for 35 runs with 18-year-old Craig Overton taking 4-38 in his second first-class match.

He impressed more than his new-ball partner, Vernon Philander, who seemed to bowl well within himself after James Hildreth put Durham in.

They got to 53 for one without much difficulty before Meschede had Will Smith caught behind.

Paul Collingwood then fell third ball, shaping to drive Peter Trego and edging to first slip as Somerset hit back impressively.

Mark Stoneman and Gordon Muchall, replacements for injured duo Ben Stokes and Dale Benkenstein, put on 28 before the former’s exit for 33 sparked the collapse.

Nine wickets had fallen in 12 overs when Somerset slipped to six for two, Graham Onions removing Arul Suppiah with the first ball of the innings before Alex Barrow fell in identical fashion, lbw when half forward.

Two other bowlers struck in their first over, both rattling the stumps with balls which cut back slightly and kept a shade low.

Mitchell Claydon bowled Hildreth for 18 but came under fire from Meschede to finish with 1-63 in eight overs.

Ruel Brathwaite, in his first appearance of the season, ended Peter Trego’s counter-attacking innings of 40, but conceded 31 runs in five overs.

Meschede included a cheeky upper cut over the slips off Claydon among the 11 fours in his half-century.

He was finally caught low down at first slip by Collingwood as Callum Thorp spared Durham’s blushes with three late wickets.

Philander lobbed a catch to cover and Overton went first ball, edging to second slip just before a halt was called with three overs left.

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