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Seconds lose to Durham in T20 epic

— 7 May 2014

Yorkshire players created a string of new County 2nd XI T20 records at York today but it could not stop them losing both their opening competition games to their near neighbours from across the Tees.

Game One


Durham won the toss and promptly invited Yorkshire to bat first. And, at last in this format, Yorkshire posted a score (165/7) that set their opponents an asking rate of more than eight an over from the off. After a decent opening stand of 39 by Jonathan Tattersall and Dan Hodgson, the bulk of the innings was built around a fourth wicket stand of 110 in just 49 minutes between Jack Leaning (52) and Will Rhodes (39).

This was the first century stand the 2nd XI had posted in T20 cricket and, therefore, the highest stand the team had recorded for any wicket against any opponents. However, both batsman went at the same score and 155/3 with two players well set and 10 deliveries left, became 155/5 with just eight balls left and two new batsmen at the crease.

Consequently, the innings subsided and only 10 more runs were added for the loss of two more wickets. So while 165/7 was pleasing, it was, according to Richard Damms about 15 or 20 runs short of what was needed and of what the team is capable of.

So quick wickets were required, as well as accurate bowling, if Durham were to be restricted. And we began well enough with Durham reduced to 54/3 in the seventh over. Richad Pyrah had two of those wickets but that was the end of the home success as Scottish international Calum MacLeod,on a month`s loan from Scotland, took the game away from the White Rose with a devastating unbeaten century.

He finished on 103* from just 57 deliveries, with 10 fours and five sixes, displaying power and timing that belied his slim frame. Ten deliveries were left when the winning boundary was scored. Gordon Muchall (32*) played a splendid subsidiary role and simply picked off singles to give his partner the strike.
So Durham got home by seven wickets in this pre-lunch game.

Game Two


Durham again won the toss and, again, asked Yorkshire to bat first. The batsman could not, however, replicate their performance of the first game as they were dismissed for just 123 in 19.2 overs, a target that was never likely to be challenging.

For the second time in two games, Dan Hodgson played on but worse was to follow as, two deliveries later, Oliver Robinson chased a wide ball and edged behind. So rebuilding work was required and Tattersall (17) and leaning set about the task, adding 38 for the third wicket.

After Tattersall came Rhodes(8) but he and Leaning were unable to repeat their first innings heroics. So at 55/4, it was left to Leaning and skipper Azeem Rafiq, to post a defendable total. They added 31 in just 14 minutes before each departed in successive deliveries.

Leaning went for 28, pulling Jack Burnham to Gavin Main at deep square leg. Azeem Rafiq wenr next ball in exactly the same manner and so the score stood at 86/6 with almost eight overs left.

Only 37 more runs were added in that time with Ryan Gibson (16) and Josh Shaw (10*) trying their best.

So, again quick wickets were required and Will Rhodes reduced Durham to 43/3 with the first hat-trick by a Yorkshire player in this competition and only the second in this the fourth year of the tournament. He has not bowled much this season due to back problems but he looked to be back to his best with a spell of 4-1-21-3.

The performance included Calum MacLeod, caught behind by Barney Gibson. Karl Carver took the other wicket to fall.
But, for Durham, Graham Clark took over MacLeod`s role and ended up 47* (one four and five sixes) to see his side home. Gordon Muchall again played a supporting role.

So a six wicket defeat resulted this time and we now adjourn to Abbeydale Park in Sheffield on Friday to take on Lancashire twice in our next fixture. Play begins at 11.30am.

Howard Clayton (Scorer, Yorkshire CCC 2nd XI)