Spitfires beaten in One Day clash
Spitfires beaten in One Day clash

Peter Trego smashed 135 against his former county as Somerset made it three wins from as many Royal London One-Day Cup South Group games with a four-wicket win over Kent at Taunton.

The 35-year-old all-rounder hit 6 sixes and 6 fours in his 119-ball innings, receiving good support from Dean Elgar (55) and James Hildreth (64) as the hosts reached an imposing target of 353 with 15 balls to spare. James Tredwell returned three for 65.

Earlier, a scintillating 46-ball hundred from Alex Blake and 113 from Daniel Bell-Drummond had led Kent to 352 for six. Blake smashed 7 sixes and 10 fours in his 116, while Sam Northeast made 51 and Craig Overton claimed three for 66.

But Somerset paced their innings better from the outset and were able to secure victory without the sort of savage onslaught Blake produced in the latter stages of the Kent innings.

After winning the toss, the visitors lost Joe Denly to the third ball of the match from Josh Davey. Bell-Drummond and Northeast then put together a century stand before Northeast drove left-arm spinner Roelof van der Merwe straight to Max Waller at cover.

After 30 overs Kent were becalmed on 136 for two. That became 146 for three when Darren Stevens hung his bat out to a wide ball from Overton and presented a simple slip catch.

In came Blake to alter the momentum with some glorious shots. The 28-year-old left-hander showed no mercy, particularly when offered width, and produced some wonderfully clean hitting all around the wicket.

Bell-Drummond’s hundred was more circumspect, occupying 113 balls, but allied to Blake’s big-hitting looked to have put Kent in a strong position.

That looked even more the case when Somerset openers Steve Davies and Jim Allenby fell with only 19 runs on the board. In Davies’ case it was his third successive duck in the competition.

But Trego and Elgar eased any nerves in the home dressing room, taking few risks in a stand of 108 in 18.1 overs before Elgar lost patience against Tredwell and skied a catch to deep mid-wicket.

The South African had looked in no trouble and that also applied to Hildreth as he and the now swashbuckling Trego put Somerset on top by adding 131 for the fourth wicket.

Hildreth’s 39-ball half-century was pleasing on the eye, but when he perished to a reverse sweep and Trego’s majestic knock ended with 59 still needed, Kent looked to be in with a chance.

Adam Hose snuffed it out with an impressive 39 and a crowd of nearly 3,000 enjoyed a tremendous day of high-scoring cricket.

Somerset centurion Peter Trego said: “When you look at a target of 350-odd in a one-day game even at Taunton it is a daunting challenge.

“But we has some important contributions apart from my own. Dean Elgar at the start, James Hildreth, who took all the pressure off me, and Adam Hose with a great cameo at the end.

“At times running with Hildy I felt every one of my 35 years. In the past I might have got out for 70-odd, but now with my experience I was able to get us closer to the finishing line. It was another big team effort in a competition that is going well for us so far.”

Kent’s Alex Blake said: “It was probably the best I have ever played, certainly in a one-day format. It’s my first List A hundred and to get it in 46 balls, even on a belting wicket, was very pleasing.

“Unfortunately, it didn’t prove enough to get us a win. When he came off our captain Sam Northeast said he thought we would need a minimum300 so I had licence to go out and be positive.

“With Daniel Bell-Drummond playing so well at the other end, I was  able to play my natural game and once I hit a couple out of the middle it seemed to keep happening. I’ll take confidence from my innings and at the age of 28 I now need to produce more consistently.”