SURREY fans hoping to watch their new captain Graeme Smith mark his home bow in style were disappointed when the Proteas opener fell for two against last season’s LV= County Championship Division One runners-up Somerset.
On a rain-interrupted second day at The Oval, Smith fell after only 12 minutes at the crease as Surrey closed on 98-4 in response to Somerset’s 384 all out.
The South African Test captain was undone by a good delivery from Somerset all-rounder Peter Trego.
Feeling down the line of off-stump to an excellent Trego leg-cutter, the tall left-hander edged toward second slip, where James Hildreth pocketed a sharp chance low to his left.
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Then, two balls before the scheduled lunch interval, Arun Harinath also picked out Hildreth in the cordon off Alfonso Thomas.
Left-hander Rory Burns and former England international Vikram Solanki – making his Surrey home debut – took the score through to 66-2 before rain arrived at 2.30pm.
Mopping up started just before 5pm, allowing umpires Jeff Evans and Richard Kettleborough to re-start proceedings at 5.45pm for a further 16 overs in the day.
Solanki, without addition to his 19, almost tossed away his wicket by chasing a wide one from Thomas, but Trego, diving to his left at backward point, could only parry it for four.
In tandem with Burns, Solanki added 56 inside 20 overs before the former Worcestershire batsman fell for 30 late in the day.
In aiming to hook the first ball of the evening from Jamie Overton, Solanki got a thick bottom edge and dragged the ball on to off stump.
In the next over and with the floodlights on, Zander de Bruyn pushed hesitantly at a good length ball from Steve Kirby and deflected it on to leg stump.
At the start of the day, Surrey bowled another 12.4 overs and needed a further 50 minutes to remove Somerset’s two remaining wickets.