Yorkshire v Derbyshire at Headingley on 28th June: Friends Life t20: North Division
By John Brown
Derbyshire travelled up the M1 to start a new Twenty20 campaign in a match with Yorkshire. Wayne Madsen started well by winning the toss and asking Yorkshire to bat first.
He received immediate support from new signing, Albie Morkel, who dismissed both the home team’s openers in his first eight balls. Dan Redfern brought about a fine run out with a direct hit at the bowler’s end, and Mark Footitt was the second bowler to take a wicket in each of his first two overs.
54 for five after ten overs was probably better than the most enthusiastic Derbyshire supporter would have dared hope for. Richard Pyrah stayed with Gary Ballance for five overs, but two more wickets fell to leave Yorkshire on 85 for seven. Spin bowlers Wes Durston and David Wainwright, playing against his old county, conceded only 41 runs from their eight overs, a joint-contribution which was to prove crucial.
Azeem Rafiq joined Ballance and helped to add twenty in just over two overs and, after Ballance was caught by Redfern on the cover boundary, the ninth-wicket pair took the Yorkshire total to 119 for eight.
Derbyshire’s ground fielding, catching and throwing had been outstanding for the most part, and they had every reason to feel confident of being able chase a comparatively modest target.
Chesney Hughes and Durston got Derbyshire off to just the start they would have hoped for - despite some accurate bowling by Ryan Sidebottom and Pyrah, Hughes, in particular, scored freely. The loss of Durston at the end of the seventh over with the score on forty, seemed unlikely to cause any anxieties.
Then Shivnarine Chanderpaul was caught at the wicket off Pyrah and this proved to be the first of six wickets to fall in less than four overs. Derbyshire had imploded from 56 for one 70 for seven, and now Yorkshire were very much the favourites to win from this position.
Wainwright joined Jonathan Clare and they batted steadily, scoring mostly in singles, for five overs while adding 22 together before Wainwright was lbw. 92 for eight – two wickets and three overs left, and still another 28 runs required. Surely Yorkshire would win from this position, but Clare and Groenewald showed real character as they set about their daunting task.
Ten runs came from the next over, bowled by Plunkett, and this was followed by an over from Sidebottom who had conceded only eight runs in his first three overs.
Tim Groenewald took a single to give Clare the strike, and he responded by leg-glancing a four, followed by three twos with both batsmen running at full tilt in order to make good their ground. After a single to finish the over, Derbyshire needed just six runs to bring about a remarkable turn-round.
Two singles to start the over and then Clare steered a full-toss past the short third man fielder for the winning four. It had been a nerve-racking, exciting finish, set up first of all by a fine team performance in the field and then by late-order batsmen keeping their heads and not subsiding to what had seemed the inevitable loss.
So Derbyshire started the new campaign with a win against a fancied Yorkshire side with several internationals in their team. The umpires chose Jon Clare as their Man of the Match.
Yorkshire 119 for 8 (20 overs) (GS Ballance 44; MHA Footitt 3 for 22, JA Morkel 2 for 9)
Derbyshire 120 for 8 (20 overs) (CF Hughes 36, JF Clare 35*; JA Brooks 4 for 28, RM Pyrah 2 for 18, A Rafiq 2 for 18)
Derbyshire (2 points) beat Yorkshire by 2 wickets
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