Yorkshire did not play against Worcestershire in any of the first seven seasons of the Twenty20 competition as the west midlands county were members of the Midland/Wales/West group. However, from 2010 onwards, except for 2013, the Pears have been regular opponents. In 2020 the two teams will meet twice for the first time since 2011, from which season Paul Dyson’s choice of profiled game comes.
June 9, 2011: Yorkshire 152-7 in 20 overs (GM Andrew 3-30); Worcestershire 150-7 in 20 overs (GM Andrew 60, RM Pyrah 4-21, AU Rashid 3-19). *Yorkshire won by two runs.
This match took place in the ninth season of T20 cricket and featured two of the three counties who had yet to reach finals day. In 2010 Yorkshire had finished sixth (out of nine) in the North Division but Worcestershire had finished bottom. After two matches each of the current season, neither county had yet to win a game. Yorkshire had lost two and their opponents had lost one and had one abandonment.
Andrew Gale won the toss for Yorkshire and took part in a first-wicket stand of 40 from 28 balls with Jonny Bairstow (24). Gale batted particularly enterprisingly making 29 from 15 balls but these two scores remained the highest of the innings although the half-century mark was passed in the sixth over. Wickets fell regularly throughout, Gareth Andrew’s fast-medium being responsible for three and Moeen Ali’s off spin being the most economical bowling. He was the only bowler to concede fewer than seven runs per over but delivered only three overs. Yorkshire were helped by an unbeaten eighth-wicket stand of 21 from 11 balls between Adil Rashid and Ryan Sidebottom who contributed 16 from only eight balls, the innings closing on 152 for seven.
Worcestershire began their innings badly and were 12 for two after three overs; both wickets fell to the leg-spin of Rashid, who had opened the bowling. This score was well behind the rate of 7.65 required for victory. Vikram Solanki made 28 but the visitors duly found themselves needing 86 from 46 balls with only five wickets left. It was then that Andrew arrived at the crease and single-handedly transformed the run-chase. He immediately set about the bowling and shared a sixth-wicket stand of 59 in a mere six overs with James Cameron who repeated Solanki’s score. Batting at well over two runs per ball, Andrew took his side within 20 runs of victory with three wickets and 13 balls left. Richard Pyrah had earlier twice taken two wickets in an over to finish with four for 21 from his four overs but it was Sidebottom who bowled the final over – from which 12 were needed – and his nerveless display meant that his side had won by two runs, him conceding only 17 from his four overs. Andrew struck four of the game’s five sixes, as well as five fours, and his unbeaten 60 came from only 26 balls.
Yorkshire again finished sixth in the North Group but Worcestershire’s form improved and they finished one place higher, only just missing out on qualification for the quarter-final stage.
Man of the Match
Despite not playing T20 cricket for Yorkshire until 2008, Adil Rashid found himself making his international debut in that format a year later being plunged, in fact, straight into the 2009 T20 World Cup. Although he had also made his ODI debut it would be five more years before he would return to the international stage after what became one season’s brief experience.
Born in Bradford in 1988 Rashid made his debut for the Academy in 2004 and first played for the full Yorkshire side only two years later at the age of 18. Innings figures of six for 67 against Warwickshire at Scarborough in that first appearance marked him out as a leg-spinner of real promise but he soon developed into a genuine all-rounder, received his county cap in 2008 and by 2014 had scored a century and taken five wickets in an innings on four occasions – a feat beaten for Yorkshire by only George Hirst and Wilfred Rhodes.