History was made at the Wellington Oval today as Janeiro Tucker became the all-time leading runscorer in Cup Match history. *Photo by Nicola Muirhead
History was made at the Wellington Oval today as Janeiro Tucker became the all-time leading runscorer in Cup Match history. *Photo by Nicola Muirhead

Somerset reinforced their authority over St George's in the final session of an historic first day at Wellington Oval, which saw Janeiro Tucker become the all-time record Cup Match runscorer.

Tucker scored an unbeaten century to pass St George's Charles Marshall's all-time run record of 1,357, sparking scenes that will go down in the annals of Cup Match history. In doing so, he also became the first man to score four tons in Cup Match.

The 38-year-old all-rounder and Tre Manders, who scored 109 - his first Cup Match ton -were the big performers in Somerset's imposing 370 for six declared after the holders had won the toss and elected to bat.

It severely dents St George's hopes of reclaiming the famous trophy and their task was thrown into even sharper focus as they closed on 76 for five at stumps, with Lionel Cann (0) and Rodney Trott (2) at the crease.

Treadwell Gibbons (13) and Christian Burgess (1) were sent back to the pavilion cheaply before captain Oronde Bascome fell for 19 to the wily offspin of Jacobi Robinson.
A fired up Malachi Jones - confirming his status as the island's premier pace bowler - then trapped OJ Pitcher lbw for 13 as Somerset's first innings total grew in stature. Onais Bascome looked good for his 25 before he fell victim to Derek Brangman's left arm spin.

The day, though belonged to Tucker, and he reached the 88 runs he need to surpass Marshall with a crashing cover drive to the boundary.

A clearly overcome Tucker was mobbed in the middle before getting a congratulatory hug from Marshall himself, who touchingly walked out from the stands to embrace the new record holder.

The day begun with Somerset reaching 139 for three by lunch, thanks in part to some wayward bowling from St.George's Justin Pitcher in particular who struggled with his line and length, although he was far from the only culprit in the home attack.

Opening batsmen Chris Douglas - attacking - and Terryn Fray - circumspect - were rarely troubled by Pitcher or Zeko Burgess and Douglas brought up the 50 without loss with another boundary, while Lateef Trott was brought into the attack as the home side searched for the first wicket.

The closest they came was when Pitcher, who had switched ends, induced a nick from Douglas but, much to skipper Bascome's frustration, it flew through second slip and to the boundary.

The sixty came up on the hour but Trott made the breakthrough, trapping Douglas lbw for 42 to cue an exhausting-looking solo run celebration.

Fray then moved on impressively despite spinner Rodney Trott being brought into the attack, with Fray looking a composed figure out in the middle along with Manders.

However, Fray fell six short of his half ton after he was caught behind off the bowling of Zeko Burgess, the Somerset man standing his ground in disbelief at the decision before reluctantly leaving his crease.

The 100 was brought up after 20.5 overs with Stephen Outerbridge's first boundary but bowlers Onias Bascome and Rodney Trott then put a stranglehold on the batsmen, bringing the runrate down before Outerbridge was snaffled lbw to Trott for six.

'Mr Cup Match' Tucker arrived at the crease with his team 114 for three and Somerset began well after lunch with Manders bringing up his 50 with an uppish scythe over point that took one bounce before the boundary.

The four prompted the traditional filling of his pockets with currency by fans flooding on to the pitch.

The game then started to get away from the home team as Manders and Tucker begun clearing the ropes with ease.

Treadwell Gibbons and Onias Bascome got the treatment as Somerset eased past 200 and Manders approached a century in only his second Cup Match.

It was buffet bowling but Manders and Tucker still had to take advantage - and they did in style. They pressed on and Manders brought up his ton with an ugly heave - out of keeping with a sublime knock - to prompt a pitch invasion. The century came off 122 balls and featured 15 fours and three sixes.

Tucker was not to be outdone and brought up his 50 with successive fours. Things then started getting embarrassing for St George's as Lateef Trott failed to get to a miscued Tucker pull in time and and then an over-the-top failed caught-behind appeal fell on deaf ears, much to Somerset fans' derision.

The home support did, though, have something to cheer when Manders was cleaned up for 109 by Lateef Trott, ending a fine knock and a 180-plus partnership.

Malachi Jones (5) then gave colt Trott his third wicket to bring in skipper Jekon Edness. Along with Tucker he helped push the score along to  with the score go 327 for five at tea.

After the break Tucker brought up his three figures and marked it with a determined fist pump to cue more hugs and cash for the most prolific Cup Match batsman.

Edness departed caught and bowled by Oronde Bascome before Kamaul Leverock treated the crowd to a mammoth six over mid-off. Skipper Edness promptly declared and the St George's batsman were put under pressure almost immediately.