• Specsavers County Championship 3m

    Crane and Dawson spin Hants to victory

    Spinners Liam Dawson and Mason Crane bowled Hampshire to a 90-run victory over Somerset in their County Championship game that moves them top temporarily

    Spinners Liam Dawson and Mason Crane bowled Hampshire to a 90-run victory over Somerset in their Specsavers County Championship game at the Cooper Associates County Ground in Taunton.


    The pair picked up nine of the 10 Somerset wickets to fall on a day when the host county suffered their third four-day defeat of the summer.

    With the exception of Dean Elgar, who helped himself to a second half-century of the game, it was another disappointing batting performance from Tom Abell's side. Having begun the day needing a further 220 runs to win, with all 10 second innings wickets intact, they slipped from 58 for 0 to 169 all out in 53.3 overs.

    Having kicked off the penultimate day as slight favourites, Somerset lost six wickets in the first session as Dawson, in particular, bowled with purpose and accuracy. And Hampshire coach Craig White paid tribute to the efforts of his bowlers: "It was a great comeback and we are obviously delighted to have won. We had a blip last week at Essex, but it was always going to be about how we responded to that.

    "We felt that the first partnership for Somerset was key to them. If we broke that pair up, we could look at chipping away after that. We did exactly that and we bowled really well."

    Marcus Trescothick (34) looked in decent touch until he was adjudged to have nicked a Dawson delivery to wicketkeeper Lewis McManus. Thereafter, wickets tumbled at regular intervals as Hampshire, for the first time in the game, appeared to be in total control.

    Abell departed at 70 for 2, once again off the bowling of Dawson, before Crane found a way through James Hildreth's defence, three runs later.

    Steven Davies was trapped leg before by the increasingly effective Dawson and though Elgar, who passed 50 off 85 balls, batted without equal, he and Peter Trego were back in the locker room before the lunch interval.

    Trego was run out after Elgar refused a possible single. Then, the South African, who looked in precious little bother was bowled by a Crane delivery that quite literally crept along the floor beneath his bat.

    Lewis Gregory offered some resistance after lunch but with Craig Overton and Jack Leach departing for 10 and 7 respectively, to Crane, Somerset were soon staring down the barrel.

    Gregory followed, lbw to Dawson for 25, leaving Crane to not only help himself to the wicket of Jamie Overton in the 55th over, but his fifth scalp of the innings. A wonderful win for Hampshire, but a disappointing day for Somerset whose batting is something of a headache for coach Matthew Maynard and captain Abell.

    For the time being Hampshire have no such worries and they will take over at the top of the table after this their second win of the four-day campaign. It was a hard-fought win but thoroughly deserved with Dawson and Crane the men of the moment.

    A frustrated Abell said: "It's not good enough. It was a massively disappointing day and it has been a massively disappointing start to the season. What is even more disappointing is the fact that we have been in a strong position in all three of the Championship games we have lost.

    "We have got to be more ruthless and make it more difficult for the opposition. I feel the bowlers have bowled really well. It's the batsmen that are letting the side down. But it's us who have got us in to this mess. Now, it's up to us to get us out of it."

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