Riley Meredith Leads Somerset to Victory Against Middlesex in Vitality Blast 2024

Riley Meredith, playing his debut match at Lord’s, delivered an extraordinary performance that led Somerset to a dominant victory over Middlesex in the Vitality Blast.

Somerset’s comprehensive win, achieved with 45 balls to spare, propelled them to the top of the South Group standings.

Riley Meredith Leads Somerset to Victory Against Middlesex in Vitality Blast 2024
It was Riley Meredith's first time competing at Lord's. Getty Images

Middlesex 79 (Cornwell 15*, Helm 15, Meredith 4-12, Davey 2-13) was defeated by Somerset 81 for 1 (Banton 49*, Kohler-Cadmore 30*) by 9 wickets.

At Lord’s, Somerset bowled Middlesex out for 78, their lowest-ever score in the history of the Vitality Blast, captained by Riley Meredith. In the nine-wicket rout, the competition’s top wicket-taker Ben Green, Craig Overton, and Josh Davey each took two wickets, while the 27-year-old Tasmanian, who has six white-ball caps for his country, took 4 for 12.

Thanks to a valiant 10-wicket stand of 28 between Tom Helm and Noah Cornwell, who top-scored with 15 each, Middlesex barely came within two runs of their previous lowest score – 80 against Kent at Lord’s three years ago.

With Somerset’s third victory of the season, Tom Banton, 49 not out, and Tom Kohler-Cadmore, 30 not out, were both handed life. The South Group’s bottom team is still Middlesex.

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In addition to Overton and Meredith bowling up top, Middlesex’s careless batting also contributed to this disaster. After Middlesex was sent in, pinch-hitter Martin Andersson crashed two fours through the covers in the opening over, but the rot started when he skied Meredith to mid-on in the next over.

After Stephen Eskinazi was hit by a cross-batted slog, Meredith took Holden to an even worse heave in mid-field. With a maiden to Ryan Higgins, Overton increased the strain. The all-rounder was unable to bat the ball after the overton strike, and as a result, Joe Cracknell, who had been brought back into the team for the ailing Leus Du Plooy, edged Meredith’s best delivery of the game to wicketkeeper Banton.

By the time the opening bowlers left, Davies had also fallen, leaving the Lord’s occupants at 34 for 6. Ben Green, the competition’s top wicket-taker, didn’t join the match until the score was 50 for 7, but he had an immediate impact, removing Blake Cullen and Luke Hollman with his first two balls.

The one bright spot for the struggling hosts was when Cornwell, celebrating his call-up to the England U19s, clubbed Somerset captain Lewis Gregory into the Grandstand, saving the hat-trick.

Middlesex might have made a breakthrough, but the opportunity was squandered when Will Smeed was caught on the fence off Helm and Davies managed to cling on to an inside edge from Kohler-Cadmore in the following over bowled by Cullen.

The pain for Middlesex was increased when Cornwell had to leave the field in the middle of an over due to a hand injury he sustained while attempting to take a return catch off a ball that Banton had smacked back at him.

The Somerset pair then calmed down and began hitting sixes into the Grandstand as the Cider-men easily won with 45 balls remaining.

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