Starc, Pattinson spark colossal collapse
A 37-ball blitz with the second new ball from Mitchell Starc and James Pattinson seized the momentum back to Australia after a tough start in the field.
27 June 2013, 04:30 AM AEST
Somerset 320 (Jones 130, Starc 4-33, Pattinson 4-56) lead Australia 0-2 by 318 runs at Taunton. At 2 for 304 with only 12 overs left in the day's play, Somerset were set to make a huge dent in Australia's first day on their Ashes tour. An hour later, their innings was over and they were ready to bowl to Australia's openers. James Faulkner started the rot, removing maiden centurion Chris Jones seven balls away from the new rock. Then, with a new ball ready to set, aim and fire, Mitchell Starc castled Craig Kieswetter with his fifth ball. Three balls later James Hildreth was trapped LBW by James Pattinson, who returned at scary speeds from the Sir Ian Botham Stand end. Starc then took care of Barrow and Meschede in the same over - LBW and bowled respectively - to make it 4 for 0 and 7 for 310. Not to be outdone, Pattinson fired a rocket at Peter Trego to have him leg before and an over later obliterated Jamie Overton's stumps to make it 6 for 0 and 9 for 310. The last man out to face the wrath of Starc and Pattinson was Gemaal Hussain, who showed the other guys how to do it, hitting Pattinson off his pads for four first ball. James didn't like that, delivering a searing bouncer that collected Hussain's helmet (that needed to be changed), collecting four leg-byes for his side. Starc had enough off this slight resurgence, finally removing George Dockrell for the fifth duck of the innings to see it close at 320. Shane Watson and Ed Cowan then had to negotiate six balls to close out the day, which they did without loss, to complete a crazy day of first-class cricket. Earlier, Marcus Trescothick won the toss and elected to bat on what for 78 overs was a road. To be fair, Australia's fast bowlers didn't handle the first new ball as they would have liked, over-pitching and allowing the Somerset batsmen time on the front foot. Dumped England opener Nick Compton batted like he had a point to prove, taking on the fast bowling with timed aggression to collect an impressive 81. A standing ovation from his county crowd showed the appreciation the public still have for the gritty opener. The story for Somerset though, was Jones' maiden first-class hundred. Unaware that he was playing until yesterday, Jones looked right at home at Taunton against three Test bowlers. His punishment of anything fractionally short was most impressive, forcing the Australian attack to overcompensate and pitch up. Jones' departure was the catalyst for the Somerset collapse, but after reaching 130 and batting for almost four hours it's hard to blame him it, even though the humble youngster shouldered some of the responsibility in his post-match press conference. Now it's Australia's turn to make the most of a flat track and quick outfield. New Australian coach Darren Lehmann has confirmed that Shane Watson will be one of the opening batsmen for The Ashes, so he'll look to spend as much time in the middle as possible to re-familiarise himself with the oncoming attack