Paul Collingwood induces Somerset collapse as Durham fight back

BOWLING STAR: Paul Collingwood.
BOWLING STAR: Paul Collingwood.
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PAUL Collingwood induced a dramatic Somerset batting collapse as Durham twice fought back on a first day of fluctuating fortunes in the opening LV=County Championship match of the season at Taunton.

Johann Myburgh’s first Championship century for the hosts and solid contributions from Tom Cooper (47) and James Hildreth (53) looked to have put them in control at 224 for two.

Borthwick counter-attacked with relish to end an intriguing day on 52.

But 38-year-old Collingwood then took four wickets in 20 balls with his medium-paced seamers just before tea and added another after the break to finish with five for 57 as Somerset crashed to 299 all out. Graham Onions claimed four for 59.

By the close the visitors had replied with 98 for two from 19 overs, again battling back after Lewis Gregory claimed two early wickets. Scott Borthwick cracked 12 fours in racing to a 46-ball half-century.

The game started in bright sunshine and Marcus Trescothick surprised no one when electing to bat after winning the toss. The Somerset skipper made only 11 before edging a drive off Onions to first slip, but then saw Myburgh and new Australian signing Tom Cooper put their team on top.

By lunch they had taken the score to 89 for one from 30 overs. Myburgh went on to a 91-ball half-century and needed only 43 more deliveries to bring up his hundred, completed with a sweep for two off a Scott Borthwick full toss.

The 34-year-old South African had produced some quality cover drives and back-foot shots. He lost partner Cooper, who impressed on his Somerset debut, with the total on 123 when the Aussie fell leg-before to Paul Coughlin, having struck nine boundaries.

Myburgh and Hildreth started to cut loose in a stand of 101, which saw the latter reach a typically attractive 65-ball half-century, with 8 fours and 2 sixes.

Their partnership ended when Myburgh, having hit 15 fours and a six in reaching 118, directed a back-foot shot off Collingwood straight to Michael Richardson at short cover. It proved the turning point in the day.

The veteran Durham skipper, operating from the River End, quickly pinned Hildreth lbw, bowled Alex Barrow defending, and had Peter Trego leg-before as Somerset plunged to 249 for six at tea.

Continuing to play shots, they lost Jim Allenby to Collingwood before Onions cleaned up Lewis Gregory, Tim Groenewald and Abdur Rehman to complete the sorry procession.

When Durham batted a lively start from Gregory saw Keaton Jennings caught behind and Mark Stoneman held in the slips with only 13 on the board. But Borthwick counter-attacked with relish to end an intriguing day on 52, with partner Richardson unbeaten on 35.