England new boy Stoneman and Bess impress as Somerset and Surrey share spoils

10 August 2017 05:54

England new boy Mark Stoneman and Dom Bess shone as Somerset and Surrey battled out an inevitable draw on the final day of their Specsavers County Championship clash at Taunton.

Stoneman celebrated his England call-up for next week's first Test against West Indies with a top score of 67 while Somerset youngster Bess claimed five for 101 - taking his tally to 35 wickets in just six championship appearances - in a Surrey first-innings total of 345.

That was in reply to Somerset's 436 in a rain-affected match, which included a third-day washout and both sides only managing one innings each. The hosts took 13 points in their fight to avoid relegation, while Surrey collected 11.

The day began with Surrey 69 for one and Stoneman unbeaten on 34. He soon moved to a fluent half-century off 86 balls, with nine fours.

Bess struck for the first time with the total on 99 with Scott Borthwick (seven) mistiming a drive to short cover where Somerset skipper Tom Abell took the catch.

Jason Roy began positively, lofting Bess over long-on for six. He looked in decent touch moving to 26, but then fell in a similar manner to Borthwick, with Jack Leach the successful bowler.

It was 138 for four when Stoneman became the third Surrey batsman caught by Abell attempting to drive through the offside, Bess striking another blow for the hosts.

Aaron Finch survived a tough caught and bowled chance to Bess on 16 and hit a straight six off Leach as lunch approached.

Surrey lost another wicket when Ben Foakes, on 20, was caught behind attempting to pull a delivery from Craig Overton and the lunchtime score read 183 for five.

The visitors required 287 to avoid being asked to follow on and had advanced their score to 208 when Finch (39) offered a simple catch to short-leg, edging a sweep off Bess.

Sam Curran contributed 32 before Bess removed him by taking a sharp return catch with the total on 243. The second new ball was taken at 256 for seven and Rikki Clarke almost immediately deposited it into the River Tone with a big six off Leach.

It was 284 for seven at tea. The final session saw Clarke caught behind off Tim Groenewald for 33 with the technicality of the follow-on figure having been passed.

Abell produced a direct hit at the bowler's end to run out Tom Curran for 35, attempting a quick single off Groenewald, and ensure his side of maximum bonus points.

Surrey lost out on a fourth batting point by five runs when Bess tempted Stuart Meaker with a wide one and Steve Davies completed the stumping to end the game. It was the fifth time in his short career that Bess had claimed five wickets or more in a Championship innings.

Source: PA