Dom Bess poised to make Somerset debut against touring Pakistanis
By RICHARD WALSH
DEVON all-rounder Dom Bess is standing by to make his 1st XI debut for Somerset after being named in the 13-strong squad to face Pakistan.
The 18-year-old off spinner, who is a useful middle-order batsman, was on the the Academy at the County Ground in Taunton for two years, before graduating at the end of last summer.
Bess then spent the winter at the Darren Lehmann Academy in Adelaide, where he worked with a number of the top Australian coaches and played grade cricket with considerable success.
Bess s now on a Somerset Scholarship contract and has enjoyed success with bat and ball for Somerset 2nd XI as well as turning in some impressive performances for Devon in Minor County competitions.
Bess, who plays for Exeter in the Devon League, said it would be ‘a dream come true’ to make his 1st XI debut against the tourists.
He added: To be around the Somerset first team boys is great.
‘The other day I played alongside Marcus Trescothick and Chris Rogers for the 2nd XI against Kent.
‘The influence they have on the game and the way that they see it is great to experience.
‘To play against Pakistan, who will be going on to play England later in the summer is something that I cant quite comprehend at the moment.’
Over the year several members of the Bess family have been involved with Somerset, but none has made it to first team level… yet.
‘Three of my cousins have tried so there has been a good old crack from the Bess family, so being the youngest its nice to actually say that at least one of us has done it.
‘Zak and Luke and Josh say that they had their turn but now its my time to have a crack and give it my best. I have given it my best shot and hopefully I will get the nod.’
If selected Bess will be the latest in a long line of Devon youngsters who have journeyed up the M5 to Taunton to play First Class cricket.
Back in 2010 Lewis Gregory another Devonian was called up to make his debut against Pakistan in a one day game and took four wickets after which he hasn't looked back.
‘When you look at where Lewis has got to now, he has established himself and is a role model for the Devon boys,’ said Bess.
‘Since then we have had Jamie and Craig Overton and now there is Ben Green and Tom Lammonby who are all making their way through the ranks after me.
‘It is awesome to have them around the changing room and know that you are in a similar position.’
Somerset supporters with long memories will recall Brian Roe, Roy Kerslake and Mark Lathwell – all Devon youngsters who served Somerset with distinction.
Bess added: ‘There are quite a few Devon boys knocking on the door which is nice to see but for me to play against Pakistan would be a dream come true.’
Bess is very highly rated by the Somerset cricket boss Matt Maynard who said: ‘Dom is a real fighter and is a sort of Gareth Batty type of character.
‘He is snappy and is at you all the time and has got some really good skills.
‘We supported him during the winter at the Darren Lehmann Academy at Adelaide and the trip has done him a lot of good.
‘His performances for the Seconds this year have been tremendous and he is on the radar for England under 19s.’