SOMERSET captain Tom Abell has urged his side not to look too far ahead as they prepare for a potentially thrilling County Championship run-in.

Abell’s side host Yorkshire from Tuesday in the first of three games which will decide the destination of this year’s Division One title.

The last of those matches is a tantalising prospect; in Taunton, against current leaders Essex, who have a two-point advantage at the summit, but Abell insisted the players must focus on the here and now.

“There is obviously a lot of talk about that last game but we can’t focus on that yet,” Abell said.

“We have two tough games against two very good sides before that which we will have to be at our best in.

“We were nowhere near our best at Yorkshire earlier this season and were well beaten, so we know we will have to be on it from the start.

“There will be times when we are up against it and have to show our fight and character, as we did at Edgbaston.”

That victory in Somerset’s most recent Championship match in August came from a losing position - the visitors ended day two 252 runs behind with five wickets left - and featured a superb century from Steve Davies in an unfamiliar position opening the batting.

Whether that is enough to keep him at the top is to be discussed this week, with Indian opener Murali Vijay set for his Somerset debut and Abell having opened in seven of the 11 Championship fixtures so far.

With the ball, Jack Leach’s England commitments create an opportunity for Dom Bess to become the go-to spinner against a side he has represented on loan in two separate spells this summer.

“Leachy has become a national hero, which is thoroughly deserved,” Abell said.

“Those of us who see him day in, day out know how much he invests into his game and how hard he works.

“It creates a bit of a void in our team but Dom and Roelof [van der Merwe] are two fantastic spinners in their own right.

“Dom has done really well up at Yorkshire this season and is now raring to go with us - the move wouldn’t have happened unless it benefited both him and the club.”

Somerset will also be without Craig Overton due to his participation in the fourth Ashes Test but they are optimistic Lewis Gregory will be fit to bowl.

The 27-year-old made a batting-only comeback against Middlesex in the final Vitality Blast group match, which saw Abell make his maiden T20 century from just 46 balls.

“I was as surprised as anyone, to be honest - not so long ago I couldn’t score a run for the second team in T20 cricket,” Abell said.

“I have had doubts about my ability as a T20 player but I have worked hard with the coaches here and it is really pleasing to see that come to fruition.

“We have worked on my hitting and pacing an innings. It is easy to panic if you swallow up a few dot balls in T20 but you can easily catch it up.

“The hundred was special and, as a Somerset boy, scoring runs at Taunton is always a brilliant feeling.”

Abell’s ton sealed his status as a genuine three-format player, something of a rarity in the modern era.

“I was more suited to red ball cricket when I was coming through but I want to be playing every game for Somerset in all formats,” he said.

“Someone like Hildy [James Hildreth] is someone I look up to in that regard.”

With Somerset falling just short of quarter-final qualification, they have now had more than a week to switch their focus back to securing the county’s first ever Championship title.

They can draw on some positive recent experiences during run-ins - Somerset have won eight and lost just two of their 13 September matches over the last three seasons, including a push for the title in 2016 and a great escape in 2017.

“There is never a dull season at Somerset,” Abell said.

“In the past we have come from nowhere and made a late charge, whereas this time we have been there or thereabouts all season, so it is a different kind of scenario.

“It should be an exciting finish and we are all really looking forward to it.”