Dom Sibley, Jamie Smith lay foundations as normal service resumes for Surrey

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Surrey 340 for 5 (Lawrence 91*, Smith 86, Sibley 76, Foakes 52) vs Worcestershire

It was normal service resumed for leaders and champions Surrey on day one of the Vitality County Championship match with Worcestershire at ‘Visit Worcestershire New Road.’

Surrey had suffered an innings-and-278-runs defeat against Hampshire in their previous Championship fixture at the Utilita Bowl ahead of the Blast in contrast to their previous four-day form.

Foakes fell just before the close – to a fourth catch for Adam Hose – but Lawrence remained undefeated on 91 from 126 balls.

It was Surrey’s first visit to New Road since they lifted the 2018 title on the ground and they are well placed to post a formidable total on the second day.

Worcestershire captain, Brett D’Oliveira, was side-lined with a shoulder problem and Jake Libby skippered the side.

Pace trio Joe Leach, Ben Gibbon and Yadvinder Singh, who all played in last month’s encounter at the Kia Oval, were ruled out through injury.

Ethan Brookes, Tom Taylor and on loan Somerset spinner, Shoaib Bashir, all made their Championship debut for the home side.

Taylor’s younger brother, James Taylor, made his first Championship appearance for Surrey since April 2022.

Surrey were put in on a rock hard looking pitch and quickly lost skipper Rory Burns.

Tom Taylor took the new ball and struck with the third ball of the morning as Burns turned a delivery straight to Bashir at mid wicket.

Ollie Pope looked in good form and cover drove Taylor for four and used his feet to turn on loan Essex seamer Ben Allison to the midwicket boundary. But he then gave Allison the charge and nicked through to Adam Hose at first slip.

Allison, signed because of injuries to Joe Leach, Ben Gibbon and Yadvinder Singh, bowled an excellent opening spell of 7-3-10-1.

But Sibley was in excellent touch, straight driving and cover-driving Adam Finch for boundaries, and coming down the wicket to hit Bashir down the ground for four after he came into the attack.

Smith also took advantage of over-pitched deliveries from Finch to collective successive boundaries and the 100 came up in just 27.2 overs.

Allison bowled another probing post-lunch spell and Sibley edged just short of second slip.

Waite again also asked questions of both batters but Sibley and Smith were determined and reached their respective fifties off 108 and 103 balls respectively. The stand was worth 149 in 40 overs when Bashir broke it as Sibley picked out Hose at short midwicket.

Smith departed in a similar manner with again Hose the catcher after Finch came into the attack.

Lawrence and Foakes upped the tempo during the final session after playing themselves in up until tea.

Foakes pulled Bashir for a maximum over wide long-on before having a let off on 31 when dropped at deep midwicket off Finch.

Lawrence cut Brookes for four to reach a 66-ball fifty and Foakes went to the same landmark from 104 deliveries.

But Finch broke the stand after the second new ball had been taken when Foakes (52) fell to a low catch diving to his right at first slip by Hose.



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