Monday, July 18th, 2022


Ben Gibbon produced a superb display with the ball – including five wickets in 17 balls – as Worcestershire Seconds bowled out Somerset Seconds for 241 on the opening day of the Second Eleven Championship match at Stourport.

The left-arm pace bowler finished with the magnificent figures of 16-5-64-7, and he demolished the Somerset batting line-up during the afternoon session after they had reached 114-1 at one stage.

Two of his dismissals were caught behind by Ben Cox, who picked up a total of three catches on his return to action.

Another left armer, but of the spinning variety in Taylor Cornall, picked up the other three wickets as Somerset, who opted to bat, were bowled out in 58.2 overs in the searing heat after opting to bat.

Worcestershire then reached 96-2 off 27 overs by the close, with Josh Dell unbeaten on 44.

Because of the expected extreme heat, it was agreed that 88 overs would be bowled on the opening two days with 104 overs on days three and four.

Gibbon struck with only two runs on the board, with Henry Cullen taking a fine low catch at third slip to account for Andy Umeed (1).

Ben Green and former Worcestershire Academy player Xavier Clarke added 112 for the second wicket before Gibbon’s explosive burst.

Green (29) edged a delivery angled across him to Ben Cox, and James Hildreth (0) was caught at slip by Oli Cox.

Will Smeed, who hit 90 for England Lions against South Africa last week, was beaten all ends up and bowled by Gibbon for a duck, and George Thomas (5) fell to another good catch, this time by Cornall at second slip.

Clarke made a run a ball 80 but was bowled by a ball of full length by Gibbon.

Cornall got in on the act with three of the final four wickets to fall, and Gibbon completed his seven-wicket haul with Will Smale (49), giving Ben Cox another dismissal.

Cornall, who scored an unbeaten 31 in last week’s LV=Insurance County Championship win over Middlesex, has been in prolific form for the Seconds.

But on this occasion, he failed to score before driving Green into the hands of backward point.

Dell and Tom Fell, a century-maker for Wolverhampton at the weekend, added 61 in confident style for the second wicket.

Fell (34) departed to a superb one-handed catch by Hildreth at slip off Thomas.

But Dell, who has so far hit six fours, and Kashif Ali (10 not out) saw the Seconds through to the close.