A blistering 96 off 41 balls from Birmingham captain and opener Alex Davies helped consigned Yorkshire to 23-run defeat in the Abu Dhabi Counties Super Cup today, booking the Bears a place in tomorrow afternoon’s final as a result.

Davies was both powerful and inventive at the Tolerance Oval, underpinning an imposing total of 222-5 having elected to bat first against the Vikings.

Leg-spinner Jafer Chohan was the pick of a Vikings attack who came under fire, returning an impressive 0-22 from four overs, conceding only one boundary. 

Seamer Dom Leech claimed 3-47 from his four overs, getting Jacob Bethell (25), Chris Benjamin (26) and Michael Burgess caught.

Yorkshire opener Will Luxton then starred with a fine 67 off 39 balls, but he was one of three wickets to fall for 20 through the middle of the innings as the score slipped to 115-3 in the 13th over. 

It proved costly as Yorkshire fell short on 199-9, including a buccaneering 49 off 22 balls late on from Dom Bess to get the game alive heading into the final over.

Jafer Chohan

Picture by Ian Roman/Abu Dhabi Cricket and Sports hub. Jafer Chohan was excellent with the ball today.

Left-arm spinner Danny Briggs impressed with 4-24 for the Bears, who defended 28 off the last as Oliver Hannon-Dalby struck twice.  

Yorkshire will now play in tomorrow’s third place play-off at 10.15am UK. Their opponents will be decided later today.

Yorkshire beat Vitality Blast champions Somerset yesterday, while the Bears beat a Team Abu Dhabi including Yorkshire players Fin Bean and Ben Cliff and a number of other players from the counties touring the Gulf.

But there were plenty of changes as coach Ottis Gibson and Mark Robinson shuffled their respective squads. Jonny Tattersall captained the Vikings. 

This match was played on a pitch with more pace in it than yesterday.

And runs flowed in both innings. 

Picture by Ian Roman/Abu Dhabi Cricket and Sports hub. Will Luxton (l) and George Hill prepare to open the batting at the Tolerance Oval.

Davies hit 10 fours and six sixes, reaching his fifty off 20 balls. He hit powerfully on both sides of the wicket and was not shy to employ the scoop.

The tone for the innings was set as he flicked a leg-side six off Mickey Edwards as the first over went for 17. Leech conceded 22 in the third over, and the Bears raced to 85-1 after six overs of powerplay. 

From there, Yorkshire did well to drag things back, and Chohan was at the heart of things during an excellent spell which deserved more reward.

Ben Coad and George Hill were the other wicket-takers alongside Leech, with Hill getting Davies caught at mid-on by Edwards as he looked to reach his century (145-3 in the 13th over).

Former Yorkshire Championship winner Will Rhodes added an unbeaten 42. 

In reply, Luxton raced away in similar fashion to Davies as the Vikings reached 61-2 after six overs, losing both Hill and Yash Vagadia to Briggs. Hill was lbw on the reverse and Vagadia bowled looking to attack.

Picture by Ian Roman/Abu Dhabi Cricket and Sports hub. Alex Davies on the charge against Mickey Edwards.

Luxton hit a couple of sixes off Hannon-Dalby, who conceded 55 runs in all, and George Garton, one of them heaved over mid-wicket. Shortly after, he reached a 26-ball fifty in the ninth over, which the Vikings ended at 89-2. 

When Matthew Revis (17) and James Wharton – bowled by Briggs and caught at slip off left-arm wrist spinner Jake Lintott – fell in successive overs as Yorkshire slipped to 102-4 in the 12th, it felt like a defining passage of play.

Unfortunately, so it proved.

Both sides bowled better during the second half of the respective innings. 

And when Luxton was caught at deep square-leg off Ed Barnard’s seam, Yorkshire were on the ropes at 115-5 in the 13th over. 

Captain Tattersall and Bess tried their best to recover the situation and struck the ball impressively. 

Jonny Tattersall.

Picture by Ian Roman/Abu Dhabi Cricket and Sports hub. Jonny Tattersall captained the Vikings in the Desert.

Bess slog-swept Hannon-Dalby for six over mid-wicket and reverse scooped for the another over third in the 16th.

But Tattersall fell for 26 to Briggs before Chohan was run out at the start of the penultimate over – 185-7.

Bess, needing 28 off the last, then slapped Hannon-Dalby to mid-off before Leech fell caught at third next ball. Bess hit five fours and three sixes in all, but it just wasn’t enough.

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