A SUPERB unbeaten century by Adam Hose set Somerset on their way to a comfortable 81-run success over local rivals Gloucestershire in Bristol on Friday.

Hose’s 101 not out was well supported by captain Jim Allenby (90) as Somerset ended on 294/6 from a rain-interrupted 46 overs before Jamie Overton and Max Waller claimed three wickets apiece in reply as Somerset tightened their grip on top spot in the South Group.

Having opted to bat upon winning the toss, Somerset got off to a fast start as Johann Myburgh – making his first appearance of the season in place of Dean Elgar, who was away on international commitments – flayed several early boundaries to get the scoreboard moving.

The opener’s attacking intent ultimately cost him, however, as he tried to pull a Matt Taylor ball that was not short enough to do so and succeeded only in playing on to his stumps with a bottom edge for 19.

Peter Trego was also clean bowled by Taylor soon afterwards and, when James Hildreth chipped an easy catch to Chris Dent from the bowling of Benny Howell, Somerset were 65-3.

That should have become 90/4 when Tom Smith spilled a regulation chance off his own bowling with Adam Hose on 10, and the 24-year-old went on to make the hosts pay for their mistake in some style.

Captain Allenby went to his 17th List A half century with a cut to the point boundary in the 27th over, and combined with Hose to lay the foundations for a late innings surge before rain returned with Somerset on 147-3 in the 31st over.

The pair went on to add 123 from 23.2 overs before Allenby fell 10 short of a second century in as many weeks, edging a Matt Taylor delivery through to Phil Mustard.

Hose continued to accelerate, despite the loss of Roelof van der Merwe for 15, and he and Jamie Overton joined forces in a rapid stand of 51 in four overs towards the end of the innings.

Overton benefited from being dropped twice by George Hankins on his way to 26, which included two huge sixes, and after his departure Hose kept the momentum going on his way to an excellent maiden List A century.

It came in dramatic fashion as, having looked as if he may fall agonisingly short on 93 with two balls to go, Hose launched a six high into the leg side before scampering a quick two from the final ball of the innings as Somerset finished on 294-6.

The target was slightly adjusted to 297 to take into account the delays, but Gloucestershire were on the back foot from the moment Phil Mustard walked off with a golden duck to his name after a leading edge went straight to van der Merwe in the covers from Craig Overton’s first ball.

The same bowler cleaned up Chris Dent, who tried and failed to ramp a straight yorker on 18, and Somerset put themselves firmly in charge when Ian Cockbain (16) and key man Michael Klinger (26) fell in quick succession to leave the hosts struggling on 62-4.

Jack Taylor led a counter-attack, firing eight 4s and three 6s in his 68 as he added 103 with George Hankins, but any hopes of a dramatic comeback were extinguished when both fell in consecutive overs.

Taylor was first to go, caught on the boundary by van der Merwe from the bowling of Jamie Overton, and van der Merwe then got in on the act as he found a way through Hankins’ defences for 33.

Max Waller wrapped up the tail with three wickets, all clean bowled, and the spinner sealed the victory when Liam Norwell (16) missed a straight one as Somerset closed out a comfortable derby day success in front of a disappointingly sparse crowd.

Next up for Somerset is a crunch clash on Sunday as they welcome fellow high-flyers Essex to the Cooper Associates County Ground knowing that a win would all-but guarantee a place in the knock out rounds.