(From Nottingham Evening Post)
Byline: Matt Halfpenny
NEVER one to beat around the bush, Mick Newell was brutally honest in his assessment of where Notts stand after the final day of their County Championship clash with Somerset petered out into a draw.
The club's director of cricket is always looking for the positives, meaning he has never given up on the defence of the trophy they won so memorably last September, even if others have long since done so.
Until now. For any outside hopes of back-to-back titles to remain, victory against Marcus Trescothick's side had to be forthcoming; no ifs, buts or maybes.
After this stalemate, though, the gap is simply too big to the top three to bridge with only seven games of the campaign still to come.
More of a worry, however, is that there is a much smaller divide between sixth-placed Notts on 100 points and relegation-threatened second bottom Worcestershire on 75.
It is little wonder, then, that an 11 point-haul from this encounter - to stop the recent rot of four consecutive defeats - was greeted with a sense of relief by Newell.
At 62-3 replying to Somerset's first innings 386, there would have been some nervous moments for him as he sat watching from the home dressing room. …