Derbyshire Falcons climbed to second in the NatWest T20 Blast North Group on 15 points with a three-wicket win over Durham Jets on a record-breaking night at The 3aaa County Ground.
The Falcons chased down 162 to win in front of a good crowd and the Sky Sports Cricket cameras in Derby, Daryn Smit’s men recording a Club-record seventh win in the competition.
Luis Reece top-scored for the Falcons as his 66 guided the hosts to victory with three balls to spare, the all-rounder claiming his fourth half-century of the campaign, the most by any Derbyshire batsman.
Durham won the toss and elected to bat first, a decision that didn’t pay off for the Jets early on as they lost England’s Keaton Jennings (1), Graham Clark (6) and Michael Richardson (0) within four overs.
Tom Latham (28) was the only Durham player who came out of the blocks quickly, but just before the end of the powerplay, he was caught by Alex Hughes on the mid-wicket boundary.
Tight bowling from the in-form Wayne Madsen (1-22) helped leave Durham 42-4 at the end of their powerplay, putting Derbyshire on top.
Ben Cotton (1-21) removed Paul Coughlin for 14 with his first ball, edged behind to Smit, before Durham brought up their 100 in a comeback led by Jack Burnham (34) and Stuart Poynter (61 not out). Their partnership was broken as Burnham was caught well by Cotton from the bowling of Matt Henry, ending their stand at 38.
Poynter continued to push on for the visitors and reached his half century from 28 balls, hitting three fours and three sixes. Ryan Pringle (9) was dismissed as he was caught by Callum Brodrick before Durham finished 161-7.
Derbyshire’s response didn’t start well as Billy Godleman (7) was gone in the second over, caught by Burnham. Matt Critchley recovered well for the Falcons, crashing a huge six towards the Racecourse End, but he mistimed another lofted shot and was caught by Pringle on 18.
Reece and Madsen (24) settled well and both reached their twenties before Madsen was out with the score 73-3 and the game in the balance, Derbyshire needing to score at over nine an over.
Alex Hughes got sent but soon went, leaving Reece to push on and pass 50 having faced 40 balls, hitting two fours and two sixes. It was at this point Derbyshire gained control of the chase, hitting 25 runs off the 17th over to leave the Falcons needing just seven runs from the final three overs.
Henry added a well-made 20 from just ten balls but when he was out and Reece was bowled for 66, the tension mounted again with two new batsman at the crease and three to win.
Brodick added one before he was out, but Captain Smit (5 not out) struck the winnings runs to confirm a three-wicket victory for the Falcons who move up to second in the Natwest T20 Blast North Group. The Falcons sit on 15 points and with two games to go they are nicely placed in the hunt for a quarter-final spot.
Derbyshire are next in Blast action on Thursday when they travel to Leicestershire Foxes, before the NatWestT20 Blast North Group’s final fixture against Worcestershire Rapids at The 3aaa County Ground on Friday 18 August; 7pm start.
NatWest T20 Blast is back this July and August. Save £4 by purchasing your matchday tickets in advance. While further discounts are available for groups of 10 or more. Buy online today to secure your place and save.