Chris Adams, the Surrey team director, acknowledged that it was time his side moved on from "fleeting moments of ability" and performed over four days if a season of high expectations in the Championship is not to fizzle out.
Surrey were beaten by 114 runs here, a second successive defeat that leaves them in the relegation zone in the First Division after five games without a win. "I was a player for 22 years and I've been at The Oval for five years, and in every one of those seasons there have been big expectations of Surrey and this year is no different," Adams said.
"We felt that we were – that we are – a genuinely competitive side in all cricket," he added. "It has been difficult couple of weeks, with Graeme [Smith] going home and needing to regroup, but we need to not just have fleeting moments in a game where we show our ability but to put together a performance over four days, with bat and ball, that will get us over the line.
"It was disappointing to lose this one because for the first time I felt we nailed it as a bowling unit. But in bowler-friendly conditions Nottinghamshire performed better than we did."
Surrey's Stuart Meaker took eight wickets in the match but his side were never close to a fourth-innings target of 259. The loss of opener Rory Burns for 53 prompted a collapse from 90 for 3 to 144 all out as Paul Franks (3 for 16) and left-arm seamer Harry Gurney (3 for 40) produced decisive spells.
"There was pace and carry in the pitch throughout and having lost the toss when we would have bowled first, I felt it was a really good win for us," said the Nottinghamshire director of cricket Mick Newell.
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