JAMES Hildreth's half-century was the highlight for Somerset as they tumbled from 111-1 to 186 all out on the opening day of their three-day pre-season friendly match against Middlesex.

Hildreth, who struck a ton against Cardiff MCCU in midweek, scored 59 off 79 balls (including 12 fours) from his new position of number three in the batting order.

This fixture, consisting of 96 overs per day, is Somerset's final pre-season match ahead of the return of county cricket on Friday, April 5.

Having chosen to bat first at Taunton Vale Sports Club, Somerset lost Marcus Trescothick (3) early on, only for Hildreth and Azhar Ali (40) to take the hosts up to 111-1 at lunch.

But that became 111-3 after the interval, as Hildreth was caught and bowled by George Scott and Ali was trapped lbw by Tim Murtagh.

Tom Abell (18), Eddie Byrom (19) and George Bartlett (18) staged a recovery, but their dismissals left Somerset on 171-6.

Only 15 more runs were added, most of those coming from Tom Banton (11), as the home side were all out for 186, from 55.2 overs.

Ollie Rayner (2-11 off 10 overs) and Murtagh (2-32 off 12) were the leading Middlesex bowlers.

The visitors' reply was a solid one, despite Josh Davey (2-13 off six) removing Sam Robson (12) and Stephen Eskinazi (18) to reduce them to 45-2.

Nick Gubbins (24no) and Dawid Malan (32no) ended the day at 89-2 from Middlesex's 33 overs, and play will resume tomorrow at 11am.