Leus du Plooy’s 70 wasn’t enough as Derbyshire lost to Birmingham Bears by 49 runs in the Vitality Blast at Edgbaston.
The left-hander struck a well-made 70 to lead the Derbyshire chase, but wickets at regular intervals dented the Falcons’ progress and ultimately they fell 50 runs short of their target.
85 from Sam Hain and 69 from Adam Hose helped the hosts to a total of 205-5 from their 20 overs, despite impressive figures of 3-21 from Ravi Rampaul.
Having taken two wickets in the opening match against Yorkshire, Rampaul made the best possible start at Edgbaston when he bowled Ed Pollock with the second ball of the match.
Fynn Hudson-Prentice also made an early breakthrough when he had Michael Burgess (3) caught by Billy Godleman, which brought the pair of Hain and Hose together.
The duo batted for more than ten overs, with both batsmen surpassing 50 during a 113-run stand, before Hose was caught by Daryn Smit off the bowling of Logan van Beek.
It proved to be a decisive partnership, and having been initially pegged back by the Derbyshire seamers, the set pair attacked the spinners and targeted the small boundary as they closed in on 200.
Heading into the final over, the hosts were 196-3, before Rampaul claimed the wickets of Ashton Agar (26) and Hain (85) as Birmingham Bears set Derbyshire a total of 206 to win.
The Bears replicated Derbyshire’s start to the game when Fidel Edwards bowled Luis Reece without a run being scored, which brought Wayne Madsen to the crease after just two balls.
Madsen scored three boundaries from just six balls, before he was run out by Alex Thomson, Derbyshire 24-2 at the end of the second over, still needing 182 runs to win the match.
The pair of Godleman and du Plooy put on 44 runs for the third wicket before the Derbyshire captain was run out by Jeetan Patel for nine in the eighth over.
At the point the Bears, led by the experienced spin duo of Patel and Agar, pressed home their advantage in the middle-overs, first Darren Stevens (3) caught off a top-edge, then Matt Critchley out for two with Derbyshire 80-5 in the twelfth.
Du Plooy was the mainstay and the all-rounder reached his half-century in 39 balls, including three fours and two sixes, but as he fell for 70, bowled by the Bears’ captain, Derbyshire’s hopes of maintaining the required run-rate faded.
Smit made an unbeaten 29, but the Falcons closed on 156-9 at Edgbaston, with the Bears winning by 49 runs.
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