Derbyshire Falcons keep up perfect start to T20 campaign
Derbyshire Falcons celebrated a second win in 24 hours when they beat Yorkshire Vikings by three runs in a thrilling NatWest Blast T20 match at Chesterfield.
The Vikings were chasing 166 but came up short at 162 for 7 needing 18 from the final over despite an excellent 68 from Adam Lyth.
Wayne Madsen made 42 from 28 balls and Daryn Smit an unbeaten 30 from 20 to carry the Falcons to 165 for 8 and they bowled and fielded superbly with Imran Tahir taking 3 for 18.
The Falcons had won chasing at Northampton the previous day but they elected to bat in front of a sell-out 4,500 crowd at Queen’s Park and were soon in trouble.
David Willey squared up Billy Godleman who was caught at point in the third over and after Ben Slater pulled and drove Tim Bresnan for consecutive fours, he was bowled by Steven Patterson for 14.
Azeem Rafiq kept up the pressure by striking twice in successive overs from the pavilion end with Luis Reece top edging a reverse sweep before Gary Wilson sliced a drive to point.
At 48 for 4, the Vikings were in control but Matt Henry and Madsen revived the Falcons by launching an attack on the spinners that brought 33 from two overs.
Henry lifted Rafiq deep into the crowd at midwicket and then drove him into the pavilion while Madsen cut England leg spinner Adil Rashid for consecutive fours.
Henry pulled Matthew Waite for another six but next ball sliced a drive to cover and in the following over, Madsen fell to an excellent running catch by Tom Kohler-Cadmore at wide mid-off.
Alex Hughes pulled Rashid for six but then failed to clear deep midwicket and it was left to Smit to take the Falcons beyond 150 by sweeping and pulling Willey for two sixes as 19 came from the penultimate over.
The Vikings chase started dramatically with Kohler-Cadmore bowled second ball driving at Madsen who delivered a wicket-maiden before Willey pulled Henry for four and six to take 20 from the fourth over.
Lyth was dropped on five at cover by Wilson off Madsen who was dispatched for a huge six by Willey in his final over but Tahir struck in the eighth over when Willey skied to cover.
Hardus Viljoen claimed a big wicket in his first over when Shaun Marsh miscued a pull to mid on and after 10 overs, the Vikings needed another 101.
Lyth injected some momentum by pulling Hughes over a leaping deep midwicket fielder for six and swept Matt Critchley for another before driving the leg spinner for four.
The opener was moving through the gears and reached a 42 ball 50 with a four off Viljoen to third man but Tahir defeated Peter Handscomb’s big swing and then trapped Jack Leaning lbw to swing the game towards the Falcons.
With 35 needed off three, the Vikings needed a big over and although 12 came off the 18th from Henry with Lyth driving the New Zealander for six, when he failed to clear long off 18 were needed off six balls.
Tim Bresnan set up a thrilling finish but only found the hands of Reece at cover trying to hit Henry for what would have been a winning boundary off the last ball.