Warwickshire’s director of cricket Ashley Giles has praised his batsmen after the dramatic and record-breaking victory against Somerset at Taunton.
The margin of victory – an innings and 382 runs – was the biggest in Warwickshire’s history and the biggest anywhere in the County Championship in 90 years.
It came after Warwickshire were put in by Somerset but they went on to post their highest ever total against the side most pundits made title favourites before the start of the season thanks to a maiden double-century from Varun Chopra and a fourth hundred from Chris Woakes.
“There was always a bit in the pitch but we batted very well,” said Giles. “Obviously Varun batted extremely well for us. He hadn’t got a hundred for us before so to bat through the first day and turn that into a maiden double-century set us up nicely.
“But Will Porterfield also batted very well in his first Championship innings for us. He only got 40-odd but he came in after we had lost an early wicket and was very positive which transferred the pressure to them.
“Three of our top six failed but we didn’t give it away. Once guys got in they made the most of it, so we got runs down the order which is something that didn’t happen often last season.
“It was a strange game but the important thing is that we won. Last season we should have beaten Yorkshire first up but they chased on the last day and got off to a flying start. If you can start well it does make a difference.”
Having suffered two heavy defeats against Somerset last season Giles said that Warwickshire “owed one” to the title favourites.
The margin of victory and Somerset’s second innings capitulation for 50, their lowest total since 1968, might force the bookmakers to revise their odds.
“We seem to have been written off by most people but, for me, that’s a good place to be in,” Giles said. “Even last season towards the back end of the CB40, people weren’t talking about us which allowed us to go quietly about our business.”
Former Pakistan batsman Mohammad Yousuf linked up with Warwickshire at Taunton and will make his debut in this week’s Championship match against Worcestershire at New Road.
Yousuf, who will play as an overseas player for Warwickshire until late May and then join Birmingham League club Smethwick, was unable to arrive in England in time to face Somerset.