Cricket / NatWest Trophy Semi-Finals: Clash of heads turns Reeve's tale

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Warwickshire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .252 for 8

Somerset . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .200

Warwickshire win by 52 runs

WITH Allan Donald beneath the Southern Cross, Gladstone Small recently under the surgeon's knife and Andy Moles dropped on the morning of this match, Warwickshire should not really have reached Lord's.

Donald's call-up by South Africa was not to be mentioned, ruled the captain Dermot Reeve. Small, back after a knee operation, managed a burst of 5-2-9-2 and then departed with a hamstring injury. Moles was dropped because he had not scored enough one-day runs. Stress, physical and mental, ought to have handicapped Warwickshire but on this crisp day under the Quantocks, on a bare, brown, bouncy pitch, it was the fancied Somerset who looked and were proved to be inferior.

A classic this was not but in one-day cricket the end justifies the means and what the winners do have is resolution by the bucketful. At the nadir of their innings one chorus of that old anthem from St Andrews, 'Keep right on to the end of the road', summarised the spirit.

The Warwickshire innings as a whole was vastly superior to its parts, usually an indication of good teamwork. No one managed a major score, no one failed and even the accident that removed their captain for 17 overs from the middle of the innings could be said to have worked in the Bears' favour for his 17 runs in the final fling, including successive fours off the last two balls from Andy Caddick, helped towards a more than respectable total, one that must have put a sliver of doubt into the Somerset dressing-room.

There was a nasty blip as soon as Andre van Troost took over at the River End, after Caddick had conceded four runs in five overs, as Jason Ratcliffe and Asif Din were swept away in a fiery, fast spell; a minor revival ended when Mushtaq Ahmed had Paul Smith stumped and at 89 for 3 with 30 overs gone, a rebuilding effort was needed from Reeve and the patient Dominic Ostler.

Reeve came haring down the wicket nine overs later, his gaze firmly on Richard Harden, fielding at extra cover. Coming almost as quickly from the opposite direction was the wicketkeeper Neil Burns, racing to collect Harden's throw at the stumps. The crunch would have been funny had it not been painful: Reeve's visor hit the side of Burns's face, both keeled over and needed treatment and, while Burns's face was cut and jaw bruised, Reeve eventually had to retire with mild concussion.

The recalled Neil Mallender eventually removed Ostler, whose fifty came off 79 balls, while Trevor Penney was run out by a superb, flat, fast throw from Caddick on the boundary. Roger Twose gave the coaching manual another good mauling in his 41, by which time Warwickshire were past 200 and heading for prosperity.

Somerset set off chasing 253 just after 3.30 but gave a palsied performance. Mark Lathwell looked promising before receiving what was probably the best ball of the day from Small while Andy Hayhurst was removed by Ostler's sensational slip catch.

Nick Folland, possibly the next captain, dropped anchor and made 61 before being ninth out, but a dilapidated attack were still able to nibble away at the wickets and contain the runs, the captain, returning for a fourth spell, applying the coup de grace with two wickets in successive balls. Reeve should have the man of the match, but Farokh Engineer gave the award to Ostler.

TAUNTON SCOREBOARD

(Warwickshire won toss)

WARWICKSHIRE

Asif Din c Burns b Van Troost . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

J D Ratcliffe c Harden b Van Troost . . . . . . . . . .4

D P Ostler c Harden b Mallender . . . . . . . . . . . 58

P A Smith st Burns b Mushtaq Ahmed . . . . . . . . . .33

* D A Reeve not out . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

R G Twose b Van Troost . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .41

T L Penney run out . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

N M K Smith c and b Rose . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .17

G C Small b Rose . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11

] K J Piper not out . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4

Extras (b4 lb15 w12 nb4) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .35

Total (for 8, 60 overs) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .252

Fall: 1-20 2-27 3-89 4-154 5-183 6-216 7-216 8-236.

Did not bat: T A Munton.

Bowling: Caddick 12-2-41-0; Mallender 12-4-32-1; Van Troost 12-1-57-3; Rose

12-0-63-2; Mushtaq Ahmed 12-0-40-1.

SOMERSET

A N Hayhurst c Ostler b Small . . . . . . . . . . 2

M N Lathwell lbw b Small . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

N A Folland c Munton b P A Smith . . . . . . . . 61

R J Harden c Twose b P A Smith . . . . . . . . . 29

* C J Tavare run out . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2

G D Rose c and b N M K Smith . . . . . . . . . . .6

Mushtaq Ahmed lbw b Reeve . . . . . . . . . . . .14

] N D Burns c P A Smith b Reeve . . . . . . . . .31

A R Caddick b Reeve . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0

N A Mallender not out . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10

A P Van Troost b Twose . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3

Extras (b1 lb9 w8 nb12) . . . . . . . . . . . . .30

Total (56.3 overs) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .200

Fall: 1-17 2-20 3-73 4-86 5-99 6-122 7-182 8-182 9-195.

Bowling: Small 5-2-9-2; Munton 10-3-23-0; Reeve 12-0-37-3; P A Smith 12-1-40-2; Ratcliffe 1-0-4-0; N M K Smith 11-1-51-1; Twose 5.3-0-26-1.

Man of the match: D P Ostler.

Umpires: D J Constant and B Dudleston.

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