Scorecard 

Yorkshire Vikings v Birmingham Bears

Vitality Blast, North Group

Friday July 5, 2024, 6.30pm 

Headingley 

Toss: Bears won it and elected to bat first.

Vikings: Adam Lyth, Dawid Malan, Shan Masood c, George Hill, James Wharton, Donovan Ferreira w, Matthew Revis, Jordan Thompson, Dom Bess, Conor McKerr, Dan Moriarty.

Bears: Alex Davies c&w, Chris Benjamin, Dan Mousley, Sam Hain, Ed Barnard, Jacob Bethell, George Garton, Chris Miles, Zak Foulkes, Jake Lintott, Danny Briggs.

Match Summary: Yorkshire fell five runs short of chasing a record 215 target as the North Group leaders Birmingham continued their match to the quarter-finals.

The Bears won their fifth straight match – their seventh from nine in all – this one coming by a four-run margin. Sam Hain’s superb 98 not out off 48 balls underpinned their imposing 214-7.

But Yorkshire ran them agonisingly close, finishing on 210-5. But that only scratches the surface of the story.

Dawid Malan hit 54, Donovan Ferreira 66 off 32 balls – the South African’s first Blast fifty – and Yorkshire needed 18 off the last two overs at 197-4. Unfortunately Ferreira fell at the start of the 19th over and George Garton – the ex-England left-arm quick – defended a target off 11 off the last over and six off the last ball. 

Ferreira

Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com.  Donovan Ferreira hits out against Birmingham en-route to his best Blast score.

Yorkshire have now lost five of their nine matches in the North Group and have work to do to qualify for the quarters.

Report: Sam Hain crashed eight sixes in an innings more power than poise on an excellent Headingley surface after the Bears had elected to bat. 

Hain’s fourth fifty of the ongoing campaign took him to the top of the Blast runs chart on 395.

Captain and opener Alex Davies, who elected to bat, also contributed a brisk 43, though he later left the field with a finger injury sustained whilst keeping wicket.

Hain was more powerful than he is known for and hit the majority of his sixes to the leg-side, though not exclusively to the short side over towards the Western Terrace.

The Vikings made the perfect start as left-arm spinner Dan Moriarty bowled Ed Barnard with the fixture’s first ball.

Dan Moriarty

Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com. Dan Moriarty celebrates dismissing Warwickshire’s Ed Barnard with the first ball of the match.

Moriarty was one of three Yorkshire bowlers who finished with two wickets, pacers Jordan Thompson and Conor McKerr the others. Jafer Chohan had to miss this fixture due to a broken thumb. 

Birmingham’s innings kicked into life in the fourth over as Davies took the lion’s share of 24 off Matthew Revis – 41-1.

After Davies was trapped lbw by a Thompson yorker – 79-3 in the eighth over – number four Hain took on the lead role in fine fashion.

He hit three leg-side sixes off seam in reaching his fifty off 34 balls on a true pitch with a fast outfield. By that stage, Bears were 141-4 in the 15th over.

Hain was on course for a second career T20 century as he went into the final over on 98. But he didn’t face another ball.

He watched on as New Zealander Zak Foulkes whipped his first ball for six off McKerr over fine-leg and over the Howard Stand roof – a feat only a few have achieved previously. 

Shan Masood

Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com. Alex Davies and Shan Masood at the toss.

Seam bowling all-rounder Foulkes continued his excellent start to his short-term overseas spell with the Bears – this was his debut – when he had Adam Lyth caught behind with his third ball, 18-1 in the second.

Davies took the catch but immediately left the field having taken a blow moments before.

But, despite the wicket, Yorkshire started nicely thanks to classy Malan and inventive James Wharton. They shared 62 in six overs for the second wicket, the latter reverse sweeping a six off Dan Mousley’s spin in a rapid 29.

Like Birmingham had been, Yorkshire were 98-3 after 10 overs, with left-arm spinner Danny Briggs (3-35) having removed Wharton caught at deep midwicket and George Hill bowled.

With those dismissals, the Vikings’ task was getting tougher.

Malan, though, had other ideas, hoisting Briggs over long-on for six and reaching his second fifty of 2024 off 38 balls.

Malan

Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com. Dawid Malan helped set the game up for a grand stand finale.

He found a partner in ferocious South African Ferreira, and they shared 57 inside six overs for the third wicket before Malan slapped a Briggs full toss to deep midwicket – 155-4 in the 16th.

But Yorkshire had plenty of batting left, not least Ferreira, who hit four sixes in a five-ball period off Jake Lintott’s spin and Foulkes’ seam. He reached his maiden county fifty off 26 balls.

Yorkshire needed 18 off the last two overs, but Ferreira was caught at long-off against Mousley at the start of the penultimate – ultimately the key moment, 197-5.

Left-arm quick George Garton then expertly closed things out, with Shan Masood failing to hit the final ball for six.

After losing their last match, against Durham, late last month off the last ball, this was a real kick in the guts for Yorkshire.

The Vikings still have time with five games remaining, but their margin for error is now significantly less.

McKerr and Thompson

Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com. Like Dan Moriarty, Conor McKerr and Jordan Thompson struck twice apiece.

Magic moment: Donovan Ferreira hit four sixes in a five-ball period off Jake Lintott and Zak Foulkes in the 17th and 18th over to help take Yorkshire to 197-4 after 18. They needed 18 off two overs, a task you would achieve more often than not in such a high-scoring game with wickets in hand. 

Turning point: The turning point came immediately after the magic moment, unfortunately. Donovan Ferreira, with the first ball of the 19th over, speared a low full toss from the off-spin of Dan Mousley down long-off’s throat to leave the score at 197-5 with 11 balls left. The Bears closed things out from there. 

Stat of the match: Had Yorkshire reached their 215 target, it would have been a record run chase for the Vikings in T20 cricket. They chased 208 to beat Durham here by six wickets in June 2022.

What they said – Donovan Ferreira: “It’s nice to score some runs, but when the team’s on the losing side it kind of goes to waste. You don’t want to be playing such a knock and not getting your team over the line. 

“It’s part of the game. It’s getting into the back end of the tournament now, and we need a win. We need to start putting games together. 

“Things like that are going to happen. I think we were 20 runs too many with the ball. Chasing 215 was always going to be a tough chase with us behind the eight-ball. 

Vikings

Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com. The Vikings will aim to bounce back at Chesterfield on Sunday.

“But giving the team a chance was all I could do. As a finisher, I wanted to be pulling the stumps out at the end with a W behind our name. Today, it didn’t work out like that. But it’s nice to find some form, especially having struggled in previous games.”

What’s next: Yorkshire return to Chesterfield on Sunday (2.30pm) to face Derbyshire Falcons in the Blast. Earlier this week, they completed a three-day Championship win over the same opponents. 

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