Only Read stands up to Somerset

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Somerset took a firm grip on the first day of their rain-interrupted clash with early LV= County Championship Division One leaders Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge - despite an unbeaten half-century from home skipper Chris Read.

The visitors were missing South Africa overseas star Vernon Philander through a back injury and fellow paceman Adam Dibble with a rib complaint.

But it did not hinder their progress as they won the toss and took advantage of seamer-friendly conditions to reduce Notts to 93 for six in the 34.3 overs of play that was possible between the frequent showers.

Peter Trego led the way for Somerset with 3-24, while Steve Kirby and replacement seamers Craig Meschede and Lewis Gregory claimed a wicket each.

Notts, 20 for four at lunch, would have been in even deeper trouble but for 52 not out from Read, whose flowing strokeplay was in stark contrast to the struggles of his team-mates.

Chris Read

Chris Read takes the attack to Somerset. The Nottinghamshire captain was unbeaten on 52 out of 93 for six at Trent Bridge

It was no surprise to see Somerset choose to field under dark skies, but they had to wait until the eighth over before making the breakthrough when Trego pinned Neil Edwards lbw with an inswinger.

With no addition to the score Michael Lumb, a centurion at Durham last week, was dismissed in a similar fashion by the same bowler for nought.

Alex Hales fought hard only to give his wicket away in the lead-up to lunch, edging Meschede's fourth delivery behind to Craig Kieswetter as he tried to force through the off-side.

And from the final ball before the interval there was more joy for Somerset as Samit Patel slashed Trego to gully, where Arul Suppiah took a fine, diving catch.

Read came in at the resumption clearly determined to attack from the outset and he showed his intent by pulling Trego for six over the midwicket boundary.

He soon lost James Taylor, who tried to whip Kirby away through the leg-side yet succeeded only in finding the hands of Kieswetter.

But Read was undeterred as he played some eye-catching cover drives in bringing up a fifty stand for the sixth wicket with Steven Mullaney in 12 overs, of which the wicketkeeper scored 39.

Soon after, on 10, Mullaney shouldered arms and had his off-stump knocked out of the ground by Gregory, before the heavens opened again.

Just six further deliveries were bowled in the day, but it did allow Read to reach his fifty from 60 balls, driving Kirby for his eighth four.

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