Club record opening stand in T20 sees visitors to comfortable win
Northamptonshire 158 for 1 (Vasconcelos 78*, Rossington 59) beat Durham 157 for 5 (Dickson 51*) by nine wickets
Northamptonshire Steelbacks recorded their first win of their Vitality Blast campaign, hammering Durham by nine wickets at Emirates Riverside.
Fine bowling from Mohammad Nabi and Graeme White limited the home side to 157 for 5, with the two spinners claiming two wickets apiece as Sean Dickson was the only Durham batsman to look comfortable on the wicket. The hosts endured an evening to forget in both disciplines, dropping their second game of the term.
The start of the contest summed up Durham’s evening as David Bedingham fell to the second delivery, feathering an edge behind off the bowling of Nabi. Ben Stokes tried to inject pace into the innings, but his attempt to strike Nabi out of the ground resulted in a leading edge that was well taken by White for 11.
Matters got worse for the hosts when White removed Clark as Rossington stumped him off a wide. Ben Raine followed in the next over, presenting debutant Freddie Heldreich with his maiden Blast wicket, leaving the hosts 57 for 4. Cameron Bancroft and Dickson put on a stand of fifty for the second game in a row to propel their team towards the 150-run mark.
White halted the momentum when he notched his second wicket via a stumping as he dismissed the Durham captain for 27. Dickson provided the late burst, reaching his first fifty for Durham from 35 deliveries. He and Brydon Carse lifted the home side to a total of 157 for 5.
Rossington got the Steelbacks off to a rapid start in response, striking 14 from Stokes’ first over of the contest. Vasconcelos provided ample support, picking the gaps in the field to find the boundary. The Northamptonshire openers propelled their side well above the required rate in the Powerplay, posting 66 from the opening six overs.
Rossington brought up a fine half-century from 28 balls, displaying a fine range of shots around the crease. The century stand for the opening wicket soon followed in style as Rossington produced a brilliant strike over cover for six.
Vasconcelos joined his skipper to reach a fifty for the first time in T20 cricket, pulling Stokes to the fence. In the process, the Steelbacks duo notched the club’s highest partnership for the opening wicket. Liam Trevaskis removed Rossington for 59, but it did not affect the visitors as they marched towards victory with 13 balls to spare.