Yorkshire Vikings missed out on reaching the Barbados T20 Cup final going down to Nottinghamshire Outlaws by five wickets in a close encounter at Kensington Oval on Sunday.
The Vikings set a total of 128-7 from their 20 overs with Nottinghamshire chasing down the total with seven balls remaining.
After convincingly beating Hampshire Royals 24 hours earlier to reach finals day, the Vikings faced a strong and committed Outlaws side that edged a tense game in Barbados.
Having won the toss and electing to bat, skipper Andrew Gale joined Adam Lyth in the middle and Yorkshire were in trouble early on, when Lyth fell to Harry Gurney LBW in the first over.
The Vikings rallied thanks to some aggressive batting from Richard Pyrah, putting on 29 for the second wicket before he was bowled by Jacob Ball for 25 from 12 deliveries. Gale was next to go, two overs, later giving a simple chance to James Taylor off the bowling of Ball.
Australian Phil Jaques tried to push on with the rate, but found it difficult to execute some solid bowling from Nottinghamshire. Yorkshire’s middle order had an off day with Adil Rashid being easily stumped by Chris Read as he tried to get some quick runs and Joe Syaers also struggled being bowled for nought four balls into his innings
Andrew Hodd and Phil Jaques gave the White Rose some hope putting on 46 for the sixth wicket before Hodd was stumped by Read for 15 in the 15th over. Jaques eventually lost his wicket for 36 from 37 balls as tried a big shot but could only sky it for Steve Mullaney to take the catch off his own bowling.
Yorkshire’s final pair of Liam Plunkett and youngster Will Rhodes, batting for the first time in a senior game for the County, put on 31 in the last three overs with Plunkett not out on 22 and Rhodes 11 helped the Vikings to 128-7 off their allotted 20 overs.
As Nottinghamshire came out for their innings, many of the locals at the Kensington Oval believed Yorkshire were at least 15 runs light, which proved to be spot on.
Despite getting off to a perfect start, with Ryan Sidebottom taking a good catch to dismiss dangerous opener Alex Hales in the second ball of the innings off Lyth’s bowling, Yorkshire hustled well in the field and bowled with purpose but found it difficult to defend a below-par score.
Notts were 31-3 after five overs and there was hope that Andrew Gale’s men could pull off a famous win, but it wasn’t to be as James Taylor and Steve Mullaney steadied the ship with a 56-run partnership, which took Notts closer to their target.
With three overs remaining, Yorkshire were in with a shout but some strong strokeplay from Mullaney was the difference as he hammered four successive boundaries in the 18th over to take Notts home with seven balls remaining.
Yorkshire will get better for the experience and the squad now look forward to two 2-day fixtures in the coming week against Northamptonshire on Tuesday March 19-20 and looking for revenge against Nottinghamshire on Friday March 22-23, with both games taking place at Windward CC.