County Championship: Ervine and Adams save Hampshire from defeat by Somerset

Sean Ervine made his second century of the match
Sean Ervine (106) made his second century of the match, having hit 103 in the first innings
Specsavers County Championship Division One, Cooper Associates County Ground, day three
Hampshire 338: Ervine 103 & 254-5: Ervine 106, Adams 96
Somerset 587-8 dec: Overton 138, Van der Merwe 102*, Abell 79; Crane 3-143
Somerset (13 pts) drew with Hampshire (10 pts)

Hampshire's Sean Ervine made his second century of the match, backed by 96 from opener Jimmy Adams, to help their side draw with Somerset at Taunton.

Somerset added 33 to their overnight score to declare on 587-8.

That allowed Craig Overton to make his maiden first-class hundred (138) and also set a new Somerset eighth-wicket record with fellow centurion Roelof van der Merwe, who was unbeaten on 102.

But Ervine and Adams then put on 159 to help Hampshire force a draw on 254-5.

Needing 250 to make Somerset bat again, after the early loss of Hampshire skipper Will Smith for a duck, Ervine was missed behind the stumps off Jim Allenby in the last over before the interval.

Although they did lose three wickets, two of them to Van der Merwe, Adams took the game out of Somerset's reach with a further key stand of 60 for the fifth wicket with Ryan McLaren.

Hampshire's extra five points from the draw lift them a little closer to safety, having also gained five bonus points to narrow the gap on seventh-placed Durham, who have a game in hand, to 14 points.

Somerset's next game is at Edgbaston on Monday when they meet Warwickshire in the One-Day Cup semi-final.

Somerset's new eighth-wicket record partnership

It took Overton and Van der Merwe just nine more runs on day four to set a new record eighth-wicket partnership for Somerset, wiping out a mark set by two of the county's most famous players in the process.

The previous record of 172 was jointly held by Somerset's two knights, Viv Richards and Ian Botham.

Their stand, compiled against Leicestershire at Grace Road in 1983, was then matched by Adrian Pierson and Steffan Jones against New Zealand at Taunton in 1999.

The new record was raised to 217 before Overton was finally out for 138, having hit eight sixes.

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