Lancashire's runaway win

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The Independent Online
DEREK HODGSON

reports from Taunton

Lancashire 268-2 Somerset 181 Lancashire win by 87 runs

Neil Fairbrother and Graham Lloyd raised 179 for the third wicket which is, subject to verification, the second-highest partnership in Lancashire's Sunday League history. It would be no surprise to the 4,000 here yesterday to learn that the record, 182, was also against Somerset.

Just how long it took Harry Pilling and Clive Lloyd at Old Trafford in 1970 also needs research. This run-storm came in 19 overs: Fairbrother's runs came off 80 balls (four sixes), Lloyd's off 64 (one six and 11 fours).

Somerset could have made life easier if they had bowled straight and held their catches. Lloyd was missed on 0 and 42 and Fairbrother on 30, all in the deep, but it would be an exaggeration to say these drops would have affected the result. Lancashire's batsmen are seeing the ball so well, and Somerset's bowling, the brilliant Mushtaq apart, is so erratic that one or another Lancashire man would have made hay.

The pitch was another Taunton turner, hence Mushtaq's figures and only the second Sunday appearance of Gary Keedy. Somerset were asked to score at 6.7 an over: they lost two batsmen in the first four overs and lost all hope when Mark Lathwell, driving well, was run out by Jason Gallian's bomb from deep midwicket.

Somerset's middle flailed gallantly until Gallian removed two in two balls and Lancashire swaggered off with another four points towards the Grand Slam and the slight problem of having to work in three (four when Peter Martin is fit) Test players into this team.

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