Unconditional Approval

After a workmanlike day on Friday, Saturday at Taunton was truly wonderful. As nice a day as you're going to get this summer, a very good crowd and fulfilling yet contrasting innings from Marcus Trescothick, Neil Edwards, Justin Langer and James Hildreth.

Langer could have made his 83 in his sleep, and Hildreth fell to his first misjudgement; Edwards was impressive, if not quite as fluent as on Friday evening; Trescothick was simply magnificent. After easing himself into Saturday morning and occasionally looking ugly and dissonant as his mistiming got the better of him, he suddenly went up a gear and began to take apart an attack which, whatever Lance Klusener's empty bluster, wasn't fit to lace his boots.

He reached his hundred with a straight six off Jason Brown (pictured) and continued to extend Somerset's lead to the point where some unwise innovation led to his dismissal, caught at the wicket off Alex Wakely, who added to the good impression he'd created with the bat with some tidy off-spin.

Marcus, of course, received a moving and resonant standing ovation. A player at home with the unconditional approval of his people, but needing, surely, the greater stimulus which only further international competition will provide.

Whatever. Good, good times.

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