Yorkshire Vikings v Derbyshire Falcons
Vitality Blast, North Group
Sunday June 4, 2023, 11.30am
Toss: Yorkshire won it and elected to bowl first.
Teams – Yorkshire: Adam Lyth, Dawid Malan, Shan Masood c, Will Luxton, Jonny Tattersall w, Matthew Revis, Jordan Thompson, David Wiese, Dom Bess, Ben Mike, Jafer Chohan.
Derbyshire: Haider Ali, Luis Reece, Wayne Madsen, Leus du Plooy c, Brooke Guest w, Tom Wood, Mattie McKiernan, Zak Chappell, Mark Watt, Zaman Khan, George Scrimshaw.
Match summary: Yorkshire claimed their third Blast win a row as Derbyshire went the same way as Nottinghamshire and Lancashire had done last week. The Vikings finished strong with the ball to limit the Falcons to 166-8, including a county best 3-39 for Ben Mike, before Dawid Malan continued his fine form with a sumptuous unbeaten 81 off 57 balls to seal victory.
Report: How quickly things can change. This time last week, Yorkshire had just lost their third match from three against Durham at Headingley. Now they have got three wins under their belt and are realistically eying a place in the quarter-finals following this seven-wicket win with 10 balls remaining.
Derbyshire should have got more runs following Pakistan opener Haider Ali’s 74 off 47 balls and Wayne Madsen’s 44 off 26 balls, which took them to 147-2 in the 17th over.
But they were two of six wickets to fall in the latter stages of an innings which saw Madsen fall six runs short of becoming the first player ever to score six successive fifties in this format anywhere in the world.
Seamer Mike is growing into his spell with Yorkshire and was impressive.
In pursuit of a 167 target, Malan and Adam Lyth (31) shared 83 inside 10 overs for the first wicket, building on that late success with the ball.
It meant victory was a formality from there, and overseas all-rounder David Wiese also added a quick-fire 30 off 21 balls before Mike hit the winning runs.
Yorkshire conceded only 19 runs from the first four overs, including Mike’s early wicket of Luis Reece caught at short fine-leg scooping.
But Ali was the main protagonist as 40 came from the next four overs, 59-1 after eight. Having earlier flicked David Wiese for six over backward square-leg, he heaved a second over mid-wicket off Mike.
He lost partner Tom Wood for 17, brilliant caught on the reverse sweep by a diving Will Luxton at a wide short third-man off Jafer Chohan’s first ball in the ninth over.
Ali became increasingly fearsome as he grew in confidence, while Madsen busily set about trying to make history.
It looked for all money like Madsen would get there too.
Ali reached his fifty off 35 balls and went on to post his best score in a little over two months with Derbyshire. He was strong on both sides of the wicket, just like Madsen.
However, the latter drilled Wiese into the covers to leave the score at 147-3 in the 17th before Ali was smartly caught by Wiese off Mike in the next.
Mike also bowled a reverse sweeping Leus du Plooy before another three wickets fell in the last eight balls of the innings.
The Vikings then cruised to their target.
Malan pulled Zak Chappell for six over deep backward square-leg in the third over, and he had 33 by the time Yorkshire were 54-0 after six overs of powerplay.
Another one whistled over mid-wicket off another seamer George Scrimshaw to take the left-hander into the forties.
Lyth was bowled slog-sweeping at Tom Wood’s off-spin in the 10th over, 83-1.
Malan reached his latest fifty off 35 balls in the early stages of the 11th over, but Luxton, who had cut his first ball for four, fell for seven when he miscued a pull at Scrimshaw to square-leg – 110-2 after 12.
That target became 42 off the last five overs at 125-2, with Wiese now in.
He clattered an entertaining 30 before holing out to Chappell – 158-3 in the 18th. Mike then hit a six off Zaman Khan to win it.
Magic moment: Luxton’s brilliant diving catch lo to his right at short third-man to help Chohan get rid of Wood – 59-2 in the ninth over – gained a gasp of appreciation from the Headingley crowd. It was a fabulous catch.
Turning point: From 147-2 in the 17th over, Derbyshire lost six wickets in the final 21 balls of their innings as they failed to post what at one stage looked likely to be a daunting target.
Stat of the match: Derbyshire’s Wayne Madsen is one of seven players worldwide who have scored five T20 fifties in as many innings; Virender Sehwag, Hamilton Masakadza, Kamran Akmal, Jos Buttler, David Warner and Devon Conway are the others. Yorkshire’s Malan could join that list this week.
What they said – Dawid Malan: “It’s going alright at the moment. It’s always nice when you’re hitting the ball nicely to try and contribute to wins. I’m fortunate that the three times I’ve got in, I’ve managed to get us close to or over the line.
“That’s key. It’s not about stats, it’s about how many wins you contribute to.
“I think at some points we’ve been very focused on the result. We were very focused on, ‘We have to win, we have to win’.
“When it gets to those tight situations and people are so desperate to win, you end up trying too hard and it doesn’t work.
“We’ve gone away from that a bit. We believe that the result will take care of itself if we do our basics really well and the right things. It’s been a different change in mindset, and it’s paying off.
“When they were 120-2, we thought we’d be chasing 180 or 190. All credit to the bowlers. It’s a young bowling attack, and it’s great to see them be willing to step up, adapt and learn.”
What’s next: Yorkshire travel to the Uptonsteel County Ground, Grace Road on Tuesday (6.30pm) to face Leicestershire Foxes. That will be the Vikings’ seventh fixture, marking the halfway stage in the North Group campaign.