Yorkshire have made no secret of the fact that they are striving for trophies this season and hope to go one better than last season when they finished runners-up to champions Durham in the County Championship.
In their first game of the season against Somerset at Taunton they began in commanding fashion by scoring 450 in their first innings.
Rivals for the title Durham have responded with a first innings score of 452 in their game with Northamptonshire.
Traditionally Somerset's Taunton ground is a place where high scores can be made on a reasonably small ground with a fantastic pitch and generally fast outfield. However, in early April, the bowlers must fancy their chances at whichever ground they play at.
Yorkshire's batting line-up did well to nullify any threat from the Somerset attack as openers Adam Lyth (85) and Alex Lees (34) posted an opening stand of 69 before Lees was dismissed. Kane Williamson, Yorkshire's overseas signing, started with a six ball duck but Lyth, ably supported by Yorkshire's middle-order ensured a huge first innings total was posted.
Gary Ballance (77), another England prospect this season, and Adil Rashid (108), posted a century stand for the fifth wicket as Yorkshire piled on the runs. Wicket-keeper Andrew Hodd, deputising for Jonny Bairstow, then added a half century of his own to further bolster the score.
Yorkshire's bowling attack will need to perform well for the rest of the game if they are to bowl out a Somerset batting side who are full of experience and runs at County level. With a side consisting of Marcus Trescothick, Alviro Petersen, Nick Compton and James Hildreth Yorkshire will need to be at their best to force an outright victory in this game. Compton in particular will be looking to perform well if he is to force his way back into the England reckoning after a year in the wilderness.
As ever the key to winning a County Championship game is to have the ability to capture 20 wickets in the match. With the experience of former England bowler Ryan Sidebottom spearheading the attack they have every chance to do that. However, at Taunton it will take a good effort to achieve that.
In reply to Yorkshire's large total Sidebottom made an early breakthrough by capturing the prize Somerset wicket of Trescothick. However, by the close on the second day Somerset had reached 166-3 with another former England player Liam Plunkett capturing the other two wickets to fall.
Day three is set up nicely for both teams and the opening session in the morning could determine the outcome of the match with Somerset having the prolific duo of Petersen and Hildreth at the crease.
Yorkshire have begun well but it is a long, hard season for all the teams involved and Yorkshire's success could become their downfall if England come calling for some of their star names. Victories are paramount as too many draws can scupper a sides chance of winning the title.
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