FORTY years ago, a hugely popular Somerset cricketer from Weston-super-Mare lifted a trophy at Lord’s in front of thousands of jubilant fans from the Westcountry.

In 1979 it was Brian Rose doing the honours and now, four decades on from Somerset’s first ever trophy, Peter Trego is hoping to follow in his fellow Westonian’s footsteps.

Trego, who will be 38 in June, has mixed memories of Lord’s.

He was part of the Somerset sides in CB40 final defeats in both 2010 and 2011 but, as one of just two from that side who will be lining up again on Saturday (James Hildreth is the other), he insists those experiences are useful to have in the bank.

“Lord’s finals are massive occasions,” he said.

“As you walk through the Long Room and go out to bat in front a full house, it can be easy to get caught up in it or be distracted.

“With the crowd and the media attention, it is probably the closest occasion in domestic cricket to playing internationally in terms of all that comes with it.

“But we have to play the game, not the occasion, and focus as if we are playing at Taunton, New Road or wherever else.

“It is a massive opportunity and it would be huge for us to have our names on the trophy.”

Despite those previous final defeats, it has not all been disappointment for Trego at the home of cricket.

In 2014, he hit 120 to lead Somerset to victory against Middlesex - and was greeted by another famous face from his home town as he departed the scene.

“That was an extraordinary day,” Trego said.

“To make the hundred was special and then, as I came back in to the Long Room, I looked up and sat along the back row was Basil Fawlty [John Cleese] grinning from ear to ear.

“To see a fellow Westonian there, and one of the funniest blokes around, made it a memorable occasion.”

This is Trego’s first season on a white-ball only contract following his retirement from First Class cricket at the end of last season and he admitted it has been “difficult to adjust” at times.

“When you spend 20 years of your life being involved in near enough every game, you do feel a bit out of it when you’re watching Championship games online,” he said.

“I have had to come to peace with that, which has been difficult - particularly for those first couple of matches.”

Trego remains a valuable part of Somerset’s limited overs set up, however, with a typically brutal 141 against Essex and a top score of 73 in the semi-final win at Notts the highlights of his campaign so far.

“I feel in good nick and this is a really exciting time for the club,” he said.

“With the current crop of players we have across all three formats, this could be the start of a really special era for Somerset and cricket in the south west.”

As a player coming towards the swansong of a distinguished county career, it feels somewhat fitting that Trego will be part of the last showpiece final at Lord’s before the One-Day Cup becomes a ‘development competition’ next season, with the final moving to Trent Bridge until at least 2024.

“I don’t particularly understand that,” Trego said.

“I appreciate that ‘The 100’ will alter schedules, but the Lord’s final has always felt like the pinnacle of domestic cricket and it is a shame that this is the last one - though it does make it extra special that we will be playing in it.”

Right from Somerset’s first Lord’s final in 1967, when supporters arrived armed with flagons of cider, the county have always been well backed for the big occasions.

Trego enjoys a particularly special relationship with the fanbase and, perhaps understandably, that adoration is mutual.

“I mean this with no disrespect to anyone else, but Somerset’s fans are unlike any others around,” he said.

“When you are playing in these finals and the Somerset buses roll up, it gives you a real buzz.

“It can feel like it’s 10-1 in our favour when the crowd are singing and enjoying a few ciders.

“The support is massive for us and, hopefully, we can reward them with a trophy on Saturday.”