GILES WHITE believes Hampshire must write off a disastrous day as they attempt to make a miraculous recovery in their Championship clash with Somerset.
On a day which saw 25 overs lost because of morning showers, there was still enough time for 16 wickets to fall – with 12 of them Hampshire’s.
There is some variable bounce there but we had one of those phases of play where we lost a lot of wickets in a rush.Giles White
Somerset were bowled out for 346 but Hampshire were then dismissed for 147 and then reached 41 for two as they were asked to follow on.
And although the pitch may not be quite the usual batter-friendly deck at the Ageas Bowl, it is certainly not the minefield that Hampshire made it look.
The Hampshire director of cricket said: ‘It was a disappointing day.
‘But we’ve got to write it off and look ahead to make sure we keep putting in the effort.
‘We lost six wickets in 18 overs and that’s put us in a very tough position.
‘Now hopefully we can put together a score that will give us a chance.
‘There is some variable bounce there but we had one of those phases of play where we lost a lot of wickets in a rush.
‘We were in a poor position and never recovered. We’ve got it all to do.
‘We’ve been asked to follow on so if we can work our way towards 350, it might give us some chance.
‘But we are a long way off that at the moment.
‘We’re still 158 behind and there is a lot to do. We are fully aware of that.’
A day which started with the morning session washed out by showers, began brightly for Hampshire when play started at 1.45pm.
With Somerset resuming their first innings on 310 for six, they added just 36 more runs as Gareth Berg (four for 64) picked up three scalps.
Lewis Gregory (17) was the first to depart as Berg combined with Sean Ervine at slip.
And former Hampshire wicketkeeper, Michael Bates, was beaten for pace as he was bowled by Jackson Bird.
It was an encouraging start but those positive vibes then crumbled away with their most inept batting display for four years as they were bowled out for a paltry 147 in just over 43 overs.
Alfonso Thomas (three for 38) ripped out the top order with skipper Jimmy Adams (one), Michael Carberry (six) and Sean Terry (eight) all sent packing.
The recalled Liam Dawson (25) showed some mettle for a while but Will Smith (four) and Adam Wheater (13) fell as Hampshire were reduced to a miserable 65 for six.
Thankfully, Sean Ervine (23) and Gareth Berg (38) helped steer the innings away from total humiliation as the tail showed some resistance, but as a team batting performance, it was nowhere near good enough.
With a first-innings lead of 199, Somerset skipper Marcus Trescothick put Hampshire back into bat with a nasty 13-over spell to negotiate.
But Adams (five) and Terry (19) both suffered the ignominy of being out twice in the same day, as the skipper was bowled by Thomas and Terry (19) saw his off-stump uprooted by Peter Trego shortly before the close.