Derbyshire began their 2012 Friends Life T20 campaign in startling fashion with victory over the Lancashire Lightning at the County Ground by 17 runs on Duckworth Lewis.
As rain fell a keen eye was firmly set on the D/L par-scores, but after some impressive hitting from Wes Durston and Ross Whiteley the Falcons began to get ahead and remained there when play was halted in the 12th over.
This came after an impressive fielding display by the home side in which Tim Groenewald claimed two early wickets to restrict the visitors in a tightly fought T20 opener.
Overseas duo Rana Naved (pictured) and Usman Khawaja have been named in the Derbyshire Falcons squad for this evening's Friends Life t20 opener versus Lancashire Lightning, 7pm start at the County Ground, Derby.
The international duo have been added to a young and otherwise largely home-grown Derbyshire team currently flying high at the top of the LV= County Championship Second Division.
The 14-man squad in full is as follows: Wayne Madsen (Captain), Usman Khawaja, Wes Durston, Ross Whiteley, Dan Redfern, Chesney Hughes, Garry Park, Rana Naved, Jonathan Clare, David Wainwright, Tom Poynton, Tim Groenewald, Mark Turner and Tom Knight.
Rana Naved said: “I’m very excited about playing Friends Life t20.
Derbyshire fielded a strong side in the first of two matches, Wayne Madsen captaining a team including oversees star Rana Naved in preparation for the FLt20 campaign, beginning at the County Ground tomorrow against the Lancashire Lightning; 7pm start.
Having won the toss and elected to bowl first against a strong Lancashire side, the Falcons bowled with discipline, reducing the visitors to 116-9 from their 20 overs with Jon Clare (3-20) and Naved (2-15) both impressing from their four overs.
Enjoy a sneak preview of the big hits, the stumps flying, the great fielding and the audience engagement; then experience it for yourself here in Derbyshire where the Falcons are combining their team of emerging homegrown talent with the world-class firepower of Pakistan's Rana Naved and Australia's Usman Khawaja.
The slightly earlier start time than usual at Trent Bridge is due to the European Championships football fixture between England and Sweden.
Look out for a forthcoming announcement regarding the start time for the match versus Leicestershire on Friday 29th June which will make the match accessible for those attending the Olympic torch relay.
The Pakistan international has gained a wealth of limited-overs experience around the world, culminating in a sensational spell with the Hobart Hurricanes in the Australian KFC Big Bash earlier this year where he topped the wicket taking charts.
And basking in his reputation as an entertainer and a crowd pleaser, Naved has urged the Derbyshire public to come out in support of the vibrant young Falcons.
“I’m very excited about playing Friends Life t20,” he said.
Groenewald had torn through the Sharks top order in the Clydesdale Bank 40 match at Cricketfield Road taking the prize wickets of Luke Wright and Scott Styris.
The Falcons paceman eventually finished with figures of 3-30 off his eight overs but, with Sussex at 111-5 off 24 overs, the umpires called the players off as the rain fell and the match was eventually called off.
Tickets for all Derbyshire fixtures are priced at £13 Adults, £6 Juniors in advance with a further £1 saving to be made on a car park pass priced at £4.
Admission on the day of the game is priced at £16 Adults, £8 Juniors and £5 Car Parking.
The table-toppers have dominated what has been a heavily rain-affected contest and this is reflected in the points tally, with the visitors taking eight points to Leicestershire's four.
The weather has ensured that Derbyshire have been unable to build on their 259-5 and will have to settle for a draw in what has nevetheless constituted an impressive performance.
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