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Recent Match Report – Leics vs Durham North Group 2021

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Afghan seamer taken out of attack for two high full tosses in 19th over that costs 24

Durham 170 for 8 (Eckersley 50*, Lilley 3-26) Leicestershire 168 for 9 (Steel 53, Potts 3-27) by two wickets

Durham pulled off what will go down as one of the more extraordinary wins in their T20 history as Leicestershire Foxes threw away what looked like a nailed-on victory in the Vitality Blast at the Uptonsteel County Ground.

Chasing 169 to win this North Group match after Scott Steel hit 53 against his former team-mates, Durham were 108 for 8 in the 14th over and still needed 49 with only four overs left. That came down to 23 off two after Gavin Griffiths conceded 15 in the 18th but winning still looked a tall order.
Yet former Leicestershire man Ned Eckersley and Liam Trevaskis saw their side home with an over to spare as the Foxes conceded 24 in a calamitous 19th over that was started by their overseas player Naveen-ul-Haq and ended by Ben Mike after the Afghan fast bowler was ordered out of the attack for bowling two head-high no-balls.

Naveen’s first and sixth balls were called for height, the second of which Eckersley ramped for four, adding nine to the total just from no-balls. In between came a two, two singles and a leg-bye and a four for Trevaskis when he should have been caught at deep midwicket, Arron Lilley losing the ball in the sun.

Naveen’s second no-ball meant he could not bowl the extra delivery. Mike took over and Eckersley clubbed the free hit for six over long-off to complete a 36-ball half-century and win the game to a stunned silence from the home crowd.

Earlier, Durham had restricted the Foxes to what looked like a below-par 168 for 9, with Lilley hitting 31 but Matty Potts and ex-Leicestershire seamer Ben Raine taking three wickets each. Having been 117 for 3 in the 14th over, the Foxes stumbled from 155 for 4 to 166 for 9, losing five wickets for 11 runs in 15 balls.

Steel’s 53 included five fours and two sixes, Lilley’s 31 off 21 balls with sixes off Paul Coughlin over midwicket and two down the ground in consecutive balls off Scott Borthwick’s legbreaks.

Durham’s reply was off to a blistering start as David Bedingham blasted 38 off 19 balls with three sixes off left-arm spinner Callum Parkinson’s opening over. At 58 for two after 6, they looked well placed but after a bad call by Raine saw Cameron Bancroft run out they lost five wickets for 20 runs in 22 balls.

Lilley, who had Jack Burnham caught at short third man in an attempted reverse sweep and Coughlin leg before, took his third wicket as Borthwick missed the ball trying to work to leg but a career-best 3 for 26 was small consolation for what happened at the end as Trevaskis took four and a six over deep midwicket off Griffiths and Naveen’s afternoon turned into a nightmare.

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