THE Overton twins, Jamie and Craig, have certainly made their mark on the Somerset cricket scene this season.
And in most of the championship games so far one or other of the 20-year-olds, who hail from near Bideford in North Devon has contributed runs or wickets.
In the first home match of the season against Yorkshire it was Craig, who before the start of the season was considered a batting all rounder, who stood up and claimed 3-72 at home against Yorkshire.
When Marcus Trescothick’s men chalked up their first Championship win of the season at Hove against Sussex it was Jamie who contributed, taking two wickets in each innings.
Craig returned to play alongside his brother for the home game against Durham and played a major part in helping Somerset earn a batting bonus point when he blasted his way to an unbeaten 45 off 52 balls, which included three mighty sixes.
Craig then followed up with 5-63, his first five wicket haul for Somerset.
Up at Edgbaston last week both of the Overtons contributed in a game in which the only winner was the weather.
Jamie’s success came with the bat when he smote 56 off just 44 balls before Craig claimed 3-68 in the Warwickshire response.
This season’s success is particularly pleasing for Craig, who missed most of last season with a stress fracture in his back and had to sit and watch while his brother played for the Lions and then got called up to join the full England One Day squad.
Both twins are highly thought of by skipper Marcus Trescothick who said: “Both Jamie and Craig have been widely tipped about how well they are going to do for Somerset.
“Craig missed a lot last season with a back injury and returned after a successful rehab only to have to miss a couple more games earlier on, so to have him back fit is great, especially as our bowling stock has been hit by injuries.
Somerset Director of Cricket Dave Nosworthy said: “Craig was unbelievably professional last year during his rehab when we asked him not to bowl and at that time he also had a chance to work on his batting, and that is starting to pay dividends and the rewards are now being seen.”
“It is early days for Craig because he has only recently taken his first five-for and there is no doubt that there will be many more. But he will just have to keep on grafting away because it is not an easy job.”
South African Test batsman Alviro Petersen said: “Craig has has batted with composure and has bowled beautifully, landing the ball consistently in the right areas.
“Jamie, with all of his pace, bowls in short bursts and although we haven’t played on the sorts of wickets that have helped him it is heartening the way he has held himself together.”
No wonder tongues are wagging about the former Academy duo who are both being followed closely by the England cricket bosses.