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Harmer hails Essex efforts at Somerset

PUBLISHED: 19:13 14 April 2017 | UPDATED: 19:13 14 April 2017

Simon Harmer in bowling action for Essex (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Simon Harmer in bowling action for Essex (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Spinner happy with first day at Taunton

Essex off-spinner Simon Harmer was delighted with his side’s efforts on the first day of their Specsavers County Championship Division One contest with Somerset at Taunton.

Harmer nabbed a brace of wickets as the hosts were dismissed for 209, with left-arm spinner Ashar Zaidi picking up three scalps.

Ravi Bopara and Neil Wagner took two wickets apiece, with Jamie Porter also having some success with the ball for the visitors.

And following their battling draw with Lancashire last week, South African Harmer was happy to see Essex holding the upper hand.

He said: “I think we have done incredibly well to find ourselves in this position. We lost the toss but we bowled nicely.

“I think we were clinical this week, compared with last week, and have learned some lessons.

“Taunton is traditionally a spinner-friendly wicket and it was always going to be that the spinners were going to play a big part in the game.”

Essex lost Nick Browne for 11 in reply, but Alastair Cook took them past 50 with support from Tom Westley, who fell to the final ball of the day.

Cook was unbeaten on 39 at stumps and Harmer paid tribute to the former England captain.

He added; “If you bat well, I think you can get runs. It is not a complete worn wicket, but there is certainly something in it for the spinners.

“Alastair is an incredible human being and great cricketer and to have him back in the side is a huge boost. It’s the calmness he brings on and off the field.”

Somerset’s Peter Trego echoed those sentiments, saying: “I think the game has swung in their favour with Alastair’s innings. But you can only see how good the wicket is, when you have seen both sides bat.

“It’s a sporty wicket and there is something in it for the bowler. And I certainly feel the late wicket was crucial for us going in to tomorrow.

“We have worked hard on a formula of playing positive cricket and our approach is based on attacking cricket. Today was not our ‘A’ game, but we are not out of the game and we have a great history of fighting back.”

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