TAUNTON made it through to their first Baker Cup final since 2008 after comfortably seeing off Ilminster in Monday night’s semi-final.

Taunton batted first on an even-paced wicket at Taunton Deane CC and a half-century from Somerset skipper Tom Abell set them on their way.

Charles Clist chipped in with 40 as Taunton posted 180, which proved comfortably beyond Ilminster once Abell had dismissed the dangerous Louis Kraucamp early.

Taunton ended up winning by 74 runs to book their place in the final at the Cooper Associates County Ground on Monday, July 22.

They will play either Taunton St Andrew’s or North Petherton, who go head to head in the second semi-final at Taunton Vale tomorrow night (Wednesday).

“It was a really good performance,” said Taunton skipper Hugh Kelly.

“It is nice to be back in the final - it has been too long.

“We won it in 2007, lost the following year and haven’t been back since.

“It is something for us all to look forward to.”

Taunton and Ilminster had also gone up against each other two days previously, when rain denied Taunton a probable victory in their WEPL Premier 2 Bristol/Somerset encounter.

Taunton won a crucial toss and put their hosts in before taking three quick wickets, Max Toohey (1-30) picking up the key scalp of Sam Spurway (3).

Louis Kraucamp was making light of the conditions at the other end as he powered to a brisk 73 from 63 balls, including 14 fours, before he was trapped in front by Will Abell (1-8).

Taunton continued to take wickets at regular intervals, James Clark taking 4-22 from 10, and only a dogged 42 from Matt Davis pushed Ilminster above 200 as they finished their 50 overs on 209-9.

Conscious of the weather forecast, Taunton made a quick start to the reply through openers Charles Clist and Jesse Vertonghen.

Clist made 24 from 29 balls before he was caught by Craig Rice from the bowling of Ilminster’s overseas player Keelan Ashby, and Dan Quick fell for a duck.

That brought Tom Abell (10*) to the crease alongside Jesse Vertonghen, who ended unbeaten on 36, and Taunton were going well on 84-2 on 16 overs when a heavy shower ended the game.

A minimum of 20 overs were needed to constitute a result and Taunton were 30 ahead of the DRS par score when the rain came, leaving the visitors frustrated by the elements.

This Saturday, Taunton have a derby to look forward to as they host Taunton Deane (12.30pm).