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The return of county cricket also saw Indian players return to England to ply their trades in the first-class fixtures. R Ashwin, who was recently part of the India squad for the series against West Indies, returned for Nottinghamshire while Murali Vijay, who signed for Somerset for three matches, opened the innings for the county team. Here’s a look at their performances on day 1 –
R Ashwin –
Ashwin shone with the ball for Nottinghamshire on day 1 against Kent and played a pivotal ole in bowling the opponents out on 304 with a four-for. He started with the wicket of Jordon Cox (22) and soon got Kent’s skipper Sam Billings on a score of four.
The off-spinner provided the fourth break to Nottinghamshire with the wicket of Daniel Bell-Drummond, who scored 45 off 115. Ashwin bowled Oliver Robinson as his fourth scalp of the day to lead the bowling charts.
Paul Coughlin got three wickets while Liam Patterson-White salped two. For Kent, experienced Darren Stevens top-scored with 88 off 90. Heino Kuhn too played his part with an innings of 56.
Coming out to bat in the final session, Nottinghamshire lost two wickets for 35 in 12 overs. After doing his job with the ball, Ashwin would also like to get some runs under his belt.
Murali Vijay –
Making his debut for Somerset, Vijay did not have a great outing in the first innings as he was dismissed on seven off former South Africa pacer Duanne Olivier. Vijay had a cautious start and played 46 balls for his seven but could not convert his start into a big innings.
Keshav Maharaj, the South African spinner, scalped a fifer for Yorkshire to bundle Somerset out for 199. Tom Abell scored 67 for his team.
Coming out to bat for 21 overs, Yorkshire lost wickets of their top three – Adam Lyth, Will Fraine and Garry Ballance.
For Vijay, who made his comeback to the Test side after Australia tour last year, his three-match Somerset stint is an opportunity to score runs and be back in the scheme of things. Last year as well, he made his comeback to the Test side on the basis of performances in county cricket.