Glamorgan and Northants win
A review of Thursday night's action in the NatWest T20 Blast, including victories for Glamorgan and Northamptonshire.
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A captain's innings of 105 from 63 balls by Jim Allenby propelled Glamorgan to an impressive six-wicket win against Middlesex Panthers at Richmond that keeps up their hopes of quarter-final qualification from the NatWest T20 Blast's South Division.
Allenby hit three sixes and 14 fours and was joined by his opening partner Jacques Rudolph in a record Twenty20 stand for Glamorgan of 136 after Middlesex had totalled 184 for three in which Dawid Malan carried his bat for 68 not out and Dan Christian thumped five sixes in a 29-ball 48.
Rudolph, the former South African Test batsman, contributed 42 from 35 balls to a partnership which beat Glamorgan's previous T20 record - for both the first wicket and all wickets - of 129 between Matthew Elliott and Robert Croft against Gloucestershire at Bristol in 2005.
Eoin Morgan also hit a 28-ball 41 for Middlesex, but with the ground's short boundaries their total was never going to be enough once Allenby and Rudolph got going to provide a 2,000 crowd with even more entertainment.
In the end, despite Allenby's eventual dismissal by James Harris in a 19th over in which Ben Wright also pulled his first ball straight to deep mid-wicket, Glamorgan - who needed just six runs from the last over - completed their fourth T20 Blast victory of the season with three balls to spare to go into fourth place in the southern group.
Defending a modest 139 for eight, the home side restricted the visitors to 124 for nine and the victory moves them to within two points of the North Group qualifying places.
In the Bears' chase, David Willey got rid of Varun Chopra early on and the dangerous William Porterfield followed shortly after when Willey notched a direct hit at the striker's end.
Jonathon Webb then charged James Middlebrook and missed but while Shoaib Malik and Rikki Clarke were at the wicket the Bears were still favourites and even at 60-3 with half the overs remaining they had their noses in front.
Two wickets for White in the space of three balls, Clarke driving to extra cover and Laurie Evans walking in front, dragged the Steelbacks right back into the contest - but with Malik in good touch and capable of comfortably hitting the ball out of the ground, the contest was up in the air.
And so it remained to the final over which arrived with the visitors needing an unlikely 20 runs for victory.
Jeetan Patel had struck a few meaty boundaries but he could not get on strike when he needed to and the task ended up being too difficult.
Earlier, the home side had posted an under par total, with number nine's Graeme White's 34 from 12 balls valuable.
When he came to the crease in the 17th over, the score was 90 for seven - but in conjunction with Matt Spriegel, 50 were added in the final four overs to at least put up a defendable score.