Birmingham book home quarter-final despite Afridi’s four-wicket over

Birmingham 172 for 8 (Yates 65, Shaheen 4-29, Ball 3-33) beat Nottinghamshire 168 (Moores 73, Hasan 3-25, Lintott 3-27) by two wickets

Birmingham Bears booked themselves a house quarter-final within the Vitality Blast with a two-wicket victory over North Group rivals Notts Outlaws at a moist Trent Bridge regardless of shedding 4 wickets to Pakistan ace Shaheen Shah Afridi within the first over of their innings as they chased 169 to win.

The Bears, already certain of a spot within the knock-out phases after 5 straight wins earlier than this, discovered themselves reeling at seven for 4 as Shaheen, at 23 already thought to be among the many finest bowlers on the planet on this format, gave away 5 wides together with his first ball however then took wickets together with his first, second, fifth and sixth authorized deliveries.

However, after the Outlaws misplaced their England fast Olly Stone after bowling simply three balls on his comeback from harm, opener Rob Yates put collectively a peaceful 65 from 46 balls with 5 sixes that finally proved to be the inspiration for a victory accomplished with 5 balls to spare with important runs from Jacob Bethell (27) and Jake Lintott (27 not out) within the center and later phases of the innings.

Regardless of Tom Moores hitting 73 from 42 balls, the Outlaws at all times appeared to be underneath par with 168 from their 20 overs, Hasan Ali taking 3 for 25 and Lintott 3 for 27. Afridi’s 4 for 29 and Jake Ball’s 3 for 33 proved in useless and Outlaws have to beat Leicestershire Foxes at Trent Bridge of their remaining recreation to hitch the Bears within the knock-out phases.

Requested to bat first after struggling for runs of their final three matches, the Outlaws suffered an early blow as Alex Hales continued his personal poor run by chopping on to Henry Brookes for 4 however Joe Clarke and Lyndon James discovered some late momentum within the powerplay, James clearing the Larwood and Voce Stand with an unlimited six over midwicket off Brookes.

But from 61 for 1 after six overs they have been checked once more by the Bears spinners, with each Clarke (26) and Matt Montgomery bowled by Lintott in consecutive overs because the Outlaws reached midway at 86 for 3.

Lintott, the left-arm wrist spinner, picked up his third wicket when James, in his most efficient Blast innings to this point, reduce straight to backward level for 37, however gave Moores a life on 21 when he spilled what ought to have been a straightforward boundary catch off Olly Hannon-Dalby.

It turned out to be an costly miss within the context of the innings because the wicket-keeper made essentially the most of that and one other slice of luck on 28 when a steepler off Glenn Maxwell dropped protected by hammering sixes off Maxwell, Lintott and Hannon-Dalby twice as 45 have been added within the final six overs.

However that was in opposition to the lack of six wickets as Pakistan worldwide Ali signed off his Bears stint by having Steven Mullaney caught on the fence, trapping Matt Carter leg earlier than and bowling Moores with the final ball of the innings after Maxwell had eliminated Imad Wasim, leg earlier than, and Afridi through a catch at long-on earlier than Stone was run out because the final three balls of the innings all introduced wickets.

Any hopes of simple night time for the Bears appeared to be obliterated in Afridi’s extraordinary first over, which started with 5 wides however then noticed Alex Davies yorked and Chris Benjamin bowled trying a scoop off the primary two authorized deliveries, adopted by two singles and one other two wickets off the ultimate two balls, Dan Mousley falling sufferer to a shocking one-handed catch by Stone at quick cowl and Ed Barnard castled first ball by one other gorgeous yorker.

Extra drama adopted as Stone, enjoying in his first Blast match of the season after a protracted absence with a hamstring harm, needed to go away the sphere after bowling simply three balls. Yates started to claim himself with sixes off Carter and Ball however Maxwell bottom-edged into his stumps off Ball and the Bears have been 60 for five.

Because of Afridi’s heroics, the Bears have been three runs behind the place they wanted to be on the DLS chart when rain introduced an interruption with the guests 76 for five after seven, however the break, which ultimately price no overs, recreation the Bears time to collect their senses and at 101 for five after 10, with Yates having accomplished a 27-ball fifty that included 4 sixes, they have been starting to look favourites.

Bethell was needlessly run out within the twelfth over, placing the end result within the steadiness once more with 51 wanted from 50 balls, however because the requirement got here all the way down to 34 from the final 5 overs it was clear that the Outlaws wanted to be rid of Yates in the event that they have been to not slip to defeat.

Within the occasion, they claimed his wicket with the subsequent ball because the left-hander despatched a supply from Ball skywards and Clarke took a tremendous diving catch at cowl as Yates departed for 65. Ball raised dwelling hopes once more when he dismissed Ali with two overs left however Henry Brookes hit the profitable boundary off Imad within the remaining over.

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Printed : 2023-06-30 21:45:46

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