Craig Overton gave the England selectors a reminder of his talent with some quality seam bowling on the second day of Somerset’s opening Bob Willis Trophy match against Glamorgan at Taunton.
Overlooked for both the Test and one-day international squads after attending the England training camp at the Ageas Bowl, the 26-year-old all-rounder responded with five for 38 from 17 hostile overs.
Four of Overton’s wickets came in a morning session that saw Glamorgan collapse from 15 without loss to 38 for six before being bowled out for 131 to concede a first innings deficit of 165.
By the close of a day in which 13 overs were lost to rain, the home side had posted 131 for two in their second innings and led by 296.
Overton, keen to add to his four Test appearances, opened up at the River End and was soon getting bounce and seam movement from a responsive pitch that had good pace in it.
He proved too hot for Glamorgan to handle, sending back Charlie Hemphrey, Kiran Carlson, Chris Cooke and Dan Douthwaite, who could contribute only 16 runs between them.
The accurate Josh Davey provided excellent support with two for nine from his opening stint, accounting for Nick Selman and Billy Root.
Graham Wagg and Kieran Bull put up some resistance either side of a 20-minute rain break, but at lunch the visitors were 71 for six, still needing 26 runs to avoid the prospect of following on.
It was 91 for seven when Wagg, on 28, became Overton’s fifth victim, caught at first slip by James Hildreth, and 100 for eight when Bull fell lbw to Jack Brooks for 23.
Jamie Overton, bound for Surrey at the end of the season, then cleaned up the tail, having Marchant De Lange caught at mid-on off a top edge and forcing Ruaidhri Smith to sky a catch to wicketkeeper Steve Davies.
Smith batted with a runner after straining a hamstring on day one, but still managed to hit four fours and a six in his defiant 23 as the follow-on was avoided.
The start of Somerset’s second innings was delayed by more rain and an early tea was taken.
With the floodlights on, openers Tom Lammonby and Eddie Byrom took the total to 26 before Lammonby was caught behind down the leg-side off Wagg for eight.
Byrom produced some sweetly-timed shots in moving to 27, but with the total on 38 he edged De Lange, who had replaced Michael Hogan at the River End, through to wicketkeeper Cooke.
The impressive De Lange was by far the sharpest of a Glamorgan attack, lacking the injured Smith. He was missed as Tom Abell and Hildreth set about batting Glamorgan out of the game.
Both batsmen were quick to capitalise on anything loose, driving with elegance and punching short deliveries crisply off the back foot.
Off-spinner Bull was prepared to give the ball air and Hogan went past the outside edge a few times, but neither could break the increasingly confident partnership.
By the close it was worth 93, with Abell unbeaten on 44 and Hildreth on 45.
Craig Overton said: “The England selectors have told me to try and add a yard of pace to my bowling without letting it affect my accuracy and that is what I have been working on.
“The ball came out well today and I am pleased with the way things are going. I know what I have to do to get the regular Test match place I want.
“Ideally, we want to bat until tea tomorrow and if we can’t get Glamorgan all out in four sessions, we won’t have bowled well because there is enough pace in the pitch for the nicks to be carrying to the keeper and slips.”