Bowler takes full advantage

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Somerset 298-4 v Warwicks

This already attritional match, ironically, has just about no bowlers, putting a finer point on Peter Bowler's second Championship hundred for Somerset - and in his first game as deputy captain for the injured Andy Hayhurst.

Without Andre van Troost and Andy Caddick, Somerset lack a pertinent new-ball attack. Warwickshire, deprived of Allan Donald and Tim Munton, are looking ahead to their next game in a fortnight against Sussex when they should be at full strength to continue their Championship defence.

Hayhurst will be back for Sunday's match after dislocating a finger in fielding practice two days ago but the 31-year-old Bowler, a newcomer from Derbyshire, met his temporary responsibilities with a broad bat, making 122 not out in almost six hours.

Thankfully for him, it was not wide enough to edge deliveries which swung considerably and consistently beneath the cloud cover. Dermot Reeve moved the ball appreciably.

The first four wickets fell at around 40-minute intervals and lunch occupied a similar time span when doubtless, Reeve pondered his decision to put Somerset in to bat. Mark Lathwell made 47 from 70 deliveries, his leg- before dismissal to Roger Twose when playing to leg causing a wailing and gnashing of teeth for the spectators in the light of subsequent ponderous events.

Piran Holloway, having been released at his own request by Warwickshire two years ago and deputising for the injured Rob Turner, shared an unbroken partnership of 123 in 55 overs with Bowler on his return to duty at Edgbaston. It was not attractive... but it was hugely effective.

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