• Friends Life t20 round-up

Lyth, Jaques propel Yorkshire to top spot

ESPN staff
July 8, 2012
Adam Lyth smashed 78 off 51 balls for Yorkshire © Getty Images

Yorkshire concluded their most successful Friends Life t20 campaign by beating Derbyshire by 21 runs at Headingley to top the North Group and earn a home tie in the quarter-finals.

It was their seventh win of the campaign, the sequence being interrupted by two no-result fixtures, and their only defeat was inflicted by Durham who beat them by two runs in the opening match.

Put in to bat by Derbyshire, Yorkshire were given the ideal start with an opening stand of 131 by Adam Lyth and Phil Jaques, a county record for the first wicket, and they never looked back, although the visitors worked hard to restrict them to 180 for five, their joint highest score of the season.

It looked all over for Derbyshire at 99 for six but Rana Naved-ul-Hasan had other ideas with 68 wanted from the last five overs. He blasted Richard Pyrah for three consecutive sixes off the first three balls of the 16th over and then ran three twos to give him 24 off the over. He and Garry Park put on 55 in four overs for the seventh wicket before Park was caught in the deep off Moin Ashraf who bowled Tim Groenewald in the same over.

Chris Durham fell to Mitchell Starc and Naved was denied sufficient of the strike to continue his onslaught, ending unbeaten on 40 from 22 balls with four sixes, Durham closing on 159 for nine.

A blistering half-century from Michael Lumb helped Nottinghamshire romp to a 69-run victory over hapless Leicestershire and secure a home quarter-final. Lumb smashed six sixes and five fours as he raced to 62 from just 26 balls before he was caught, while James Taylor (45) and Riki Wessels (32) also contributed as Nottinghamshire made 196 for three, their highest score against Leicestershire in Twenty20 cricket.

Tight bowling from Andy Carter (three for 12) and Graeme White (two for 19) put Leicestershire behind the run-rate and despite Abdul Razzaq's 69 from 50 balls, with 11 fours and a six, last season's champions could only make 127 for nine in reply as they finished bottom of the North Group.

Surrey's miserable campaign at least ended on a winning note with a seven-wicket victory under the Duckworth-Lewis method over South Group winners Sussex at Hove. Set 62 in five overs after rain had forced a lengthy delay, Surrey reached their target in the final over thanks to an impressive cameo by Kevin Pietersen. The England international blasted 36 off 16 balls with a four and three sixes, the third of which off a full toss from Luke Wright secured victory with two balls to spare.

Warwickshire failed to benefit from the presence of England one-day international all-rounder Chris Woakes as their quarter-final hopes ended with a 22-run defeat under the Duckworth-Lewis method to Glamorgan in another rain-blighted match at Edgbaston.

The defeat meant Warwickshire finished level on points with Worcestershire but with an inferior run rate, while Gloucestershire leapfrogged both teams with an eight-wicket win at Northamptonshire. England released Woakes for Warwickshire's final Midlands/South West/Wales group match but he proved to be their most expensive bowler and took one for 50 in four costly overs.

Somerset swept through to the quarter-finals for the fourth year in a row with a comfortable seven-wicket win against Worcestershire at New Road. The west country side restricted the Royals to 119 for seven despite an unbeaten 45 by Phil Hughes, and then powered home with seven balls to spare thanks to an unbroken stand of 59 Nick Compton and James Hildreth.

Ian Saxelby took two wickets as Gloucestershire booked their place in the quarter-finals with a rain-affected eight-wicket win over Northamptonshire. In their first match since the departure of head coach David Capel, the Steelbacks were reduced to 31 for four before rain curtailed their innings, with Saxelby taking two for six. The Gladiators were given a revised target of 23 from five overs and, unsurprisingly, this did not prove difficult as they took just 14 balls to reach it.

Kevin Pietersen starred in Surrey's win © PA Photos

Kent beat Middlesex by three wickets with an over to spare in their final game at Uxbridge but it was a hollow victory because neither side had any chance of reaching the quarter-finals.

The ground staff did well to make conditions playable after the heavy recent rain but it had taken its toll and Middlesex struggled to reach 124 for nine after Kent put them in on a sluggish pitch and sodden outfield where the ball often plugged on landing. There were only 13 boundaries - three sixes and eight fours - in the entire Middlesex innings and none at all after the 15th over. Kent did not do much better, hitting only seven fours, but, crucially, they cleared the boundary rope six times and a fifth-wicket stand of 50 in seven overs between Azhar Mahmood and Alex Blake proved decisive.

Hampshire's South Group match with Essex was washed out without a ball being bowled at the Ageas Bowl. Umpires made three inspections before calling off the match soon after 5pm just when it looked as if a five-over-per-side match might still be played. With both sides being awarded one point each, that was enough to take both sides through to the last eight.

Durham and Lancashire tied their final North Group game at Chester-le-Street but their hopes of qualifying for the quarter-finals had ended earlier in the day. Both sides went into the game knowing a win could take them into the last eight as long as Essex lost against Hampshire. But the washout at the Rose Bowl gave Essex the point they needed to go through. They would have stayed ahead of Durham on run-rate even if the Dynamos had won.

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