Kane Williamson’s superb 77 off 41 balls helped Yorkshire get back to winning ways in the Vitality Blast as they defended a 186 target with great comfort to beat Leicestershire at Emerald Headingley.
The New Zealand captain hit five fours and as many sixes, while Tom Kohler-Cadmore added 53 off 44, as the Vikings posted 187-5.
The Foxes then lost five wickets in the power play to undermine their chase as Jack Brooks and David Willey starred with the new ball.
Both struck twice in an over before Willey finished with 2-20 and Brooks 3-23 from four overs as the visitors limped to 127-9, losing by 60 runs.
This was Yorkshire’s fourth North Group game in five days, with this second win going alongside back-to-back defeats against Derbyshire on Saturday and Monday.
But they have moved back into a tightly grouped top four, with all four teams now on 10 points.
After Steve Patterson won his fifth successive toss, Yorkshire benefited from five wides from Mohammad Abbas off the first ball of the game before losing Adam Lyth caught at cover off Leicestershire’s other overseas player, Mohammad Nabi, in the second (12-1).
Kohler-Cadmore was dropped on nine at deep mid-wicket by Ben Raine in Nabi’s next over before hitting Gavin Griffiths for a straight six and two fours in the fifth to take the score to 45-1.
Willey then hit three sixes in quick succession, all over mid-wicket, with the last of them off Colin Ackermann’s off-spin at the start of the eighth.
Unfortunately, he fell later in the over for 31 having skied a catch to short fine-leg as the score fell to 71-2.
Kohler-Cadmore and Williamson then made steady progress for the next few overs, happy to accumulate rather than pepper the boundary ropes in a third-wicket stand of 67.
On the whole, it wasn’t an innings full of fireworks, more a measured effort on the way to a winning total.
Kohler-Cadmore reached his fifty off 41 balls at the start of the 15th as the pair put their foot down having built a platform. With five overs left, Yorkshire were 134-2.
Kohler-Cadmore miscued a full toss from left-arm spinner Callum Parkinson down deep cover’s throat in the 16th before Williamson reached 50 off 30 balls quickly afterwards.
Williamson hit all of his sixes from deep mid-wicket round to fine-leg, including two in one over from Nabi to move to 66 (171-3 after 18).
He was bowled stepping across his stumps to Abbas in the last over.
Leicestershire then crumbled in the first six overs of their chase, slipping to 49-5 as Brooks struck three times and Willey twice, both taking two wickets in an over.
Brooks returned to the Vikings side in place of the rested Tim Bresnan.
He removed Ben Raine and Colin Ackermann in the fourth over, the latter who had off and middle stumps uprooted, and later Neil Dexter.
In the third over, Willey had Mark Cosgrove superbly caught behind by Jonny Tattersall after removing Cameron Delport.
From five down, the Foxes were never going to overhaul their target as the Vikings strengthened their hopes of a quarter-final berth with five games remaining.
The first of those is against Northamptonshire here on Friday.
Brooks struck again before Azeem Rafiq twice and Steve Patterson and Jordan Thompson claimed a wicket apiece as the Foxes staggered beyond 100.
Yorkshire’s Kane Williamson
“In any T20 competition, you want to gain momentum, and it was important to show some improvement after our last game (Derbyshire). I think we saw that on a different pitch.
“I thought the guys adapted really well.
“T20 is fickle, as we’ve seen in the last few days. We did see improvement. At the top of the order, the boys played really nicely.
“The guys with the ball, on that surface, were outstanding and very disciplined.
“It was a good team performance and a good base point for us to reflect upon and try and build even further.
“It was nice to form a partnership with Tom (Kohler-Cadmore). It was tough to get momentum, but we managed to get into a position where we could play with freedom at the end.
“I found it quite tough to time for the most part. It was about getting ones and twos because the wicket has aged with a number of games on it. It was still a good surface, but it wasn’t free-flowing.”
Leicestershire coach Paul Nixon
“The game was realistically over within 23 or 24 balls (of our chase). When you’re four down early in the power play, you’re not going to get 12-13 an over after that.
“It was disappointing, and we’ve got to look at it and learn because Kane Williamson, that was a master-class.
“The games we’ve done poorly in, the wicket’s turned and it’s been sticky. So we’ve got to look at our options at the right time and how we go about building our innings. Ones and twos become crucial on those sorts of pitches.
“We wanted to be ahead of them in the power play. They were 55, and we felt it was slightly under par. But it wasn’t meant to be. We were five down and it was game over.”