The former England wicketkeeper blasted 11 fours and three sixes at the top of the order to post the Dynamos’ highest ever individual score in this format and their second best team total, a daunting 215-6.
From the moment Phil Jaques found Scott Borthwick at mid-wicket off Chris Rushworth seven balls into the Yorkshire reply, the Vikings were seemingly faced with an impossible task to back up Tuesday’s win over Leicestershire. And so it proved.
Gary Ballance was excellent for his career best 68 off 39 balls, which included seven fours and three sixes. Not only did he played strongly over mid-wicket, but he also played with great finesse as he ramped over the wicketkeeper’s head and swept down to long-leg off the spin.
But off-spinners Gareth Breese and Will Smith struck twice apiece, as did Chris Rushworth, as Yorkshire were restricted 139-8 to lose by 76 runs.
The Vikings have now lost three of their first five North Division matches, winning one and taking a tie from the other. They head into Sunday’s clash with Derbyshire at Chesterfield absolutely desperate for a win.
Azeem Rafiq won the toss and elected to bowl first, but his side were quickly under the cosh as Mustard raced out the blocks.
He hit two sixes and three fours off in-form Jack Brooks in the fourth over of the innings, which went for 27, and the Dynamos were going along at 10 runs per over.
Things could have been different for the Vikings had a couple of early run out chances gone their way to change the momentum, while the odd miscue landed just short of the fielder. But to be fair to Mustard, he timed the majority of his shots and played superbly.
He brought up his fifty off 26 balls before being bowled by Brooks when in sight of a career best and Durham’s first hundred in this format.
Having shared 62 in 5.5 overs for the first wicket with Mark Stoneman, he added 83 in 7.4 for the second with Borthwick, who made 35 off 18. Ben Stokes later came in and hit three fours in a row off former team-mate Liam Plunkett in the 16th over.
Unfortunately, Yorkshire’s chase did not start well. After Jaques departed, Joe Sayers was bowled by Stokes and Dan Hodgson holed out to mid-off to give Rushworth his second wicket and leave the score at 22-3 after four.
A huge six from Ballance over mid-wicket off Breese in the seventh over gave the visitors brief respite, but Andrew Hodd, promoted up the order, was bowled by the West Indian shortly afterwards to leave the score at 51-4 in the ninth.
However, Ballance gave the Vikings something to cheer with his impressive innings, which included three fours in a row off Mark Wood in the 10th over.
When he miscued Breese to Stoneman at mid-off, Yorkshire were 101-5 in the 13th and all but dead and buried. Adil Rashid, Pyrah and Plunkett all fell late in the innings.