Blackwell denies old boys
Ian Blackwell shook off his poor batting form to defy his former Somerset colleagues as Durham hung on for a draw at Chester-le-Street.
The lead in the County Championship clash was 88 with 11.5 overs left when last man Ruel Brathwaite joined Blackwell.
Had Somerset removed him straight away they might have had a chance, but five balls later he survived a very sharp chance to the diving Alex Barrow at third slip off Peter Trego.
Blackwell, who had totalled 70 runs in seven championship innings, was also missed at second slip by Trego off Vernon Philander on 25.
The left-hander was unbeaten on 38 when hands were shaken with Durham on 234 for nine, 92 ahead.
With only 11 men standing, and Philander not fully fit, Somerset virtually carried two passengers as spinners Max Waller and George Dockrell batted 10 and 11 and did not bowl.
Philander appeared reluctant to bend his back and took only one wicket on Saturday, while young seamers Craig Overton and Craig Meschede performed impressively to take six wickets each in the match.
After the second and third days were washed out play began 40 minutes late with the umpires apparently concerned about a damp area at the bottom edge of the square.
Some Somerset players were practising a few yards away as though to emphasise that they were anxious to get on with it, and the loss of those 40 minutes certainly did not help them.
Craig Kieswetter, unbeaten on 60 when Somerset resumed on 220 for eight, was left stranded on 96 when they were all out for 267.
Graham Onions moved one sharply away off the pitch to have Waller caught behind, but Kieswetter did a fine job of protecting last man Dockrell from the strike.
Callum Thorp posed little threat and Kieswetter smashed him for two fours in an over before swinging a good-length ball from Onions high over the mid-wicket boundary.
When Mitch Claydon came on his second ball received the same treatment and, having taken a wicket in his first over, he finished with one for 71 from 9.2.
The end came when Kieswetter went back for a second run to deep mid-wicket and Dockrell had no chance of beating Mark Stoneman's throw to the non-striker's end.
Trailing by 142, Durham had 71 overs to survive and it looked like being a stroll as the openers put on 61.
Will Smith fell for 22 when he reached for an away swinger from Trego and edged to second slip.
Michael Di Venuto departed for 38 when he spooned a catch to cover, but Paul Collingwood profited from Somerset's lack of resources.
When they turned to their fifth seamer, Lewis Gregory, he began with two wides then bowled two long hops, which the batsman cracked to the cover boundary.
Overton gained lbw verdicts either side of team to remove Collingwood for 36 and Stoneman for 32, then Somerset kept chipping away, only for Blackwell to deny them a deserved win.
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