De Bruyn kills off Unicorns
A stylish 104-ball century from Zander de Bruyn guided Somerset out of trouble and to a seven-wicket Clydesdale Bank 40 win over the Unicorns at Taunton.
The home side were reduced to nine for two in reply to 233 before de Bruyn, who hit 13 fours and a six in his unbeaten 106, Arul Suppiah and James Hildreth, with a 54-ball innings of 84 not out, produced a recovery that saw them to a third Group A victory in as many games with 19 balls to spare.
Former Somerset players Keith Parsons and Wes Durston had made significant contributions to the Unicorns innings of 233 for eight, Michael O’Shea top-scoring with 61 off 74 balls.
Ben Phillips, who took 3-40, and Damien Wright, with 3-43, were the most successful bowlers.
Left-arm-seamer Jonathan Miles looked to have set up the possibility of a shock result by yorking Marcus Trescothick for one and having Nick Compton caught in the slips for three at the start of the Somerset reply.
But de Bruyn looked in tremendous form from the start of his innings and Suppiah helped add 76 for the third wicket to calm any nerves.
Hildreth then smashed a 39-ball half-century, with a six and six fours, in an exciting century stand with de Bruyn that featured some brilliant running between the wickets as well as numerous cleanly struck boundaries.
The Unicorns innings had been given a fast start by former Gloucestershire player Jackson Thompson, who thumped 36 off 26 balls, with four fours and two sixes.
The powerful left-hander helped take the score to 57 in the ninth over when he pulled Alfonso Thomas' first ball of the match straight to Suppiah at long-on.
O’Shea and Durston then ensured the scoring rate was maintained with a stand of 47 in seven overs, Durston enjoying his return to Taunton with five fours in his breezy 25-ball innings.
That laid the foundation for veteran Parsons to come in and remind home supporters of his one-day batting skills. He hit only three fours in facing 73 balls, but cleverly worked ones and twos kept the scoreboard ticking.
It was 185 for four when O’Shea was lbw sweeping at Phillips, who had earlier removed opener Chris Murtagh for 12. Former Glamorgan batsman O’Shea had hit a six over long-on off Peter Trego to reach a fluent half-century off 67 balls.
Phillips claimed three wickets for the third successive Clydesdale Bank match, while Wright took two in his final over. But it had been an excellent effort by the Unicorns against some patchy bowling.
Leg-spinner Max Waller proved more economical than the seamers, conceding only 27 from eight overs.