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FISHER & GIBSON SHINE IN DEBUT

— 9 June 2013

Yorkshire Vikings won the toss and chose to bat, finished on 258/9. Leicestershire Foxes won by 3 wickets (with 5 balls remaining)

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Liam Plunkett marked his return to action by hitting a quickfire half-century to help one of Yorkshire Vikings’ most inexperienced line-ups take Leicestershire Foxes to a tense finish in today’s YB40 match at Scarborough.


Having won the toss and decided to bat, Yorkshire looked on course for to reach a modest total after they lost four wickets in three overs and slumped to 197 for seven with 5.3 overs remaining, only for Plunkett to give the innings renewed impetus.


Plunkett, absent for the last three weeks with a thigh strain, hit 53 off 23 balls to help add 61 off the last five overs and reach a competitive 258 for nine despite fielding four teenagers in their starting line-up.


Gary Ballance (virus), Richard Pyrah (hip) and Moin Ashraf (back) were all rested, prompting Yorkshire to give history maker Matthew Fisher his debut – at 15 years and 212 days he is the youngest post-war cricketer to play a competitive county match.


Fisher made his debut alongside 17-year-old all-rounder Ryan Gibson, while Ben Coad, at just 19, and Will Rhodes, another 19-year-old, also made the starting line-up as Yorkshire chose to give youth a chance having lost four of their first five matches in this competition, ruling them out of qualification for the semi-finals.


It was the more experienced members of the batting line-up that made the early impressions, however, with Joe Sayers – playing his first limited overs senior match since the start of last season – top scoring with a useful 58.


Captain Andrew Gale, just 24 hours after his incredible innings of 272 against Nottinghamshire in the championship, kick-started the innings with a quickfire 44 off 42 balls before edging behind trying to cut.


Following his dismissal, Sayers teamed up with Adam Lyth to add 65 partnership in 76 balls but the loss of both in the space of six overs, quickly followed by the loss of three more wickets in two overs, left the Vikings struggling to reach a competitive score until Plunkett’s late intervention.


Despite fielding four teenagers in their attack, Yorkshire did well to limit a Leicestershire side still trying to qualify for the semi-finals. Greg Smith top-scored with 58 off 51 balls but became one of two victims for Rhodes when he edged behind.


Fisher, who finished with one for 40 from seven overs, on his senior debut, claimed the wicket of Shiv Thakor, trapped lbw with the third ball of his second spell, but was unable to mark his senior bow with victory after Robert Taylor hit a match-winning 48 off 36 balls to seal a three wickets victory with five balls remaining.


Despite Yorkshire’s defeat, Jason Gillespie, the first team coach, admitted he was very proud of the performance of a team including four teenagers.


“I’m just incredibly proud of all the lads, especially the young lads who came in,” he said. “Having to step up and perform under pressure, I thought they were  fantastic and they were an absolute credit to themselves and a credit to Yorkshire. 


“I couldn’t be happier with how they performed and I know we went down and that’s disappointing, but the experience they will take out of this first day of first team cricket is great for the future.”


“I was absolutely chuffed that Matthew got a wicket. I thought he bowled really well as did all our young lads. Ben Coad is only playing his second game and I thought he handled himself well. Ryan Gibson came on late and got a wicket and Will Rhodes picked up two – how good is that for the future with four lads under 18?”


INTERVAL


Liam Plunkett hit a stunning half-century on his return to action to help Yorkshire Vikings’ inexperienced line- set Leicestershire Foxes a challenging target in today’s YB40 match at Scarborough.


The Vikings looked set for a modest target after losing four wickets in three overs to slump to 197 for seven with 5.3 overs remaining but Plunkett, playing for the first time in three weeks after a thigh strain, hit an amazing 53 off 23 balls to help Yorkshire reach 258-9.


Plunkett hit five fours and four sixes during his amazing innings and helped Yorkshire add 61 off the last five overs before being caught at cover attempting another big hit despite fielding an inexperienced line-up.


Having rested Gary Ballance, Richard Pyrah and Moin Ashraf, Yorkshire fielded one of their most inexperienced line-ups for many years – including history maker Matthew Fisher making his debut.


Fisher, aged only 15 years and 212 days, is the youngest post-war cricketer to play a competitive county match and made his debut alongside 17-year-old all-rounder Ryan Gibson. Ben Coad, at just 19, and Will Rhodes, another 19-year-old, also made the starting line-up.

Fisher made 10 off four balls before being run out at the last ball.

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