Warwickshire dominated day one of their 2012 LV= County Championship opener against Somerset after the visitors were bowled out for 147 at Edgbaston.
Many Bear’s fans would have been worried after the news of lengthy injuries to bowling duo Chris Woakes and Boyd Rankin, but fears quickly vanished as the Warwickshire attack tore through the Somerset top order.
South African Vernon Philander’s late cameo saved the blushes of the Sabres’ batsman who after winning the toss elected to bat first on what at first seemed to be a batsman friendly pitch.
The Warwickshire reply ended on 111-3, with Varun Chopra unbeaten on 40 at stumps in what was a thrilling start to the new season.
Winter signing Chris Wright produced an inspired first spell of bowling to remove opener Arul Suppiah, thanks to a good low catch in the slips from Rikki Clarke, to claim their first wicket of the 2012 campaign.
Wickets either side of a rain interval for Keith Barker soon followed. First the wicket of former England Test batsman Marcus Trescothick for nine and then James Hildreth was clean bowled first ball as Somerset slumped to 14-3.
The morning was dominated by good swing and seam bowling from the opening pair, and was duly finished off by Rikki Clarke who got his season off to a good start with two wickets.
After a calamitous run-out, which saw both Philander and Adam Dibble stranded at the same end, the South African Test bowler began to free his arms hitting a couple of sixes from the favorable bowling of Darren Maddy.
Philander finally fell to the Warwickshire man for 38 as Somerset were all out for 147, Wright claiming the final wicket, and his fourth, in a promising start for the club.
Some good stroke play by Chopra got the scoreboard ticking, but his partner Porterfield was soon back in the pavilion after glancing a leg side delivery through to Craig Kieswetter.
Jim Troughton was the final, and the thirteenth wicket to fall on the day, after he inside edged a Dibble delivery onto middle stump for seven.
Maddy’s introduction helped stabilise the innings as Chopra, who earlier collected his first county cap for the Bears, looked at ease at the crease and he was able to finish off what was a very good start to the season for the Birmingham club.