Can Somerset continue their winning run?
Our prediction is that Somerset will continue the winning run against Essex on 26th April 2019.
The Royal London One Day Cup underway between England and Wales first-class county teams. This is the sixth season of the tournament that began in 2014 and is played yearly since then in a round-robin fashion between 18 teams which are geographically divided into two groups – North and South.
This will be the fourth match for each Somerset and Essex who belong to the South Group. Somerset gained their consecutive third victory against Sussex albeit by D/L method. With this win, Somerset is leading the South Group table. On the other hand, Essex lost two of the three matches and are at the sixth spot in the ranking right now.
It will be interesting to see whether Somerset would be able to continue the winning run.
Somerset had been a mediocre team in the early years of Royal London One Day cup having reached the 6th position in 2014 and 2015. However, they reached semi-final in 2016 and quarters in 2017 where they lost despite scoring 405 while chasing 430. They were among the top 4 teams in 2018 as well.
Somerset have started this season with 3 consecutive wins against Kent, Glamorgan, and Surrey. They demolished Kent 264 runs whereas kept the nerves against Glamorgan to clinch a thriller by just 2 runs. They had Surrey at 62 for 4 in chase of 284 before rain intervened to give Somerset a win by 68 runs (D/L) method.
Tom Banton scored a century against Kent. Lewis Gregory played a good hand with two half-centuries against Kent and Sussex. Azhar Ali and James Hildreth look in good touch. Craig Overton is leading the bowling attack along with Josh Davey for Somerset. The team looks set for another push for victory against Essex.
TB Abell (c), T Banton (wk), Azhar Ali, PD Trego, JC Hildreth, L Gregory, C Overton, GA Bartlett, RE van der Merwe, TD Groenewald, JH Davey
Essex has been a very consistent team in the Royal London One Day Cup where they have reached the knockout stages of the tournament every single time. They reached the quarter-final in the last year tournament as well.
However, Essex could not start this season as well as they would have liked. In the first three matches against Glamorgan, Middlesex, and Surrey they could muster just one win against Glamorgan by 180 runs. Essex lost against Middlesex by 38 runs and against Surrey by 65 runs.
Varun Chopra’s two centuries for Essex have been a big positive. In fact, Essex, as a batting unit, scored more than 300 runs against Glamorgan and Middlesex, batting first and chasing respectively. However, weakness in bowling has cost them the matches. Peter Siddle and Samuel Cook have done well so far and would be keen to get Essex to their second victory in the tournament against Somerset.
RN ten Doeschate (c), RG White (wk), V Chopra, AN Cook, T Westley, DW Lawrence, RS Bopara, SR Harmer, PM Siddle, JA Porter, SJ Cook
Only 3 ODIs have been played at Taunton of which 2 have been won by the team batting first. 21 matches have been played at this venue in Royal London One Day Cup of which 13 have been won by the team batting first.
The team winning the toss should look to Bat first at this venue as last five matches have been won by the team batting first at Taunton.
Somerset is cruising along in the tournament so far and has reached the top spot after 3 matches. Essex, despite having done well traditionally, find themselves at the bottom of the table. Somerset is playing at home and has won 3 of the last 5 home games at Taunton. Overall, Somerset looks confident in home conditions to beat Essex at Taunton.
Thus, our prediction is that Somerset will get their 4th win against Essex on 26th April 2019.
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