Aaron Finch blasts century as Surrey beat Sussex in the T20 Blast

Last Updated July 13 2018, 22:11Cricket
Aaron Finch
Aaron Finch

Aaron Finch made a brilliant 131 not out, the highest Twenty20 score by a Surrey batsman, as his side ended Sussex's unbeaten start to the Vitality Blast with a thumping 52-run South Group win at Hove.

Aaron Finch made a brilliant 131 not out, the highest Twenty20 score by a Surrey batsman, as his side ended Sussex's unbeaten start to the Vitality Blast with a thumping 52-run South Group win at Hove.

Badly dropped by Jofra Archer with a single to his name, the Australian made the most of his reprieve with a brutal assault on the Sussex attack as he struck 10 fours and seven sixes from just 79 balls.

With 61 plundered off the last five overs he helped Surrey, who were put in, to 192 for three, a total Sussex never looked like overhauling on a pitch offering seam movement and uneven bounce.

Opener Phil Salt made 74 in the reply but the next highest scorer was Archer's 19 as Sussex were bowled out for 140 in the 18th over.

It was Finch's night but Archer will have nightmares about the straightforward return catch he shelled when the right-hander pushed tentatively forward to the first ball of the second over. Somehow Archer failed to hold on to the simplest of chances and Finch was soon making Sussex pay.

Even leg-spinner Rashid Khan, who had been instrumental as Sussex won their first three games, was not spared.

Finch, who made 114 not out against the same county at the Kia Oval last year, hit the world ranked number-one T20 bowler for two fours and two sixes.

Sussex managed to restrict Surrey to less than eight an over for the first 15 overs but Ollie Pope (23 not out) sensibly made sure Finch saw as much of the strike as possible during the late assault.

The opener thrashed a further six fours and four sixes as the pair plundered an unbroken 100 from 50 balls for the fourth wicket.

David Wiese had earlier foxed Rory Burns with a slower ball and Danny Briggs trapped Nic Maddinson lbw in his first over.

Khan's brilliant pick-up and throw ran out Ben Foakes as he scampered through for a second.

Surrey were 92 for three in the 12th over but Khan, Archer and Chris Jordan, whose three overs cost 39 runs, were all targeted when Finch went into overdrive.

It was spectacular entertainment for a sell-out crowd of 6,200 but Sussex's response was tame in comparison.

Sam Curran, released from the England one-day international squad, set the tone by bowling back-to-back maidens and picking up Laurie Evans, the leading run-scorer in the Blast so far, off a mis-timed drive to mid-off.

In between, Luke Wright chipped Jade Dernbach to midwicket to leave Sussex eight for two and Matt Pillans had New Zealander Tom Bruce caught at deep midwicket and Michael Burgess held at long-on in successive overs.

Salt was eventually yorked by Pillans for a career-best 74 from 47 balls with eight fours and two sixes while Pillans, who took three for 20, was the pick of the Surrey attack.

A brilliant century from Ben Raine lifted Leicestershire Foxes to a 102-run victory over Birmingham Bears in the Vitality Blast at Edgbaston.

Former Durham all-rounder Raine smashed his way to 100 from just 41 balls, the second-fastest T20 century by an Englishman, on his way to a blistering 113 from 46 balls with 10 sixes and eight fours.

His first century in any format for Leicestershire, it featured some magnificent straight hitting and lifted the Foxes to their record T20 total - 229 for five.

Raine then took two wickets in his first over to leave Birmingham's reply in early disarray at 36 for three.

There was no way back from that for the Bears, who folded to 127 all out to leave the Foxes with their record T20 win and both teams with two wins and two defeats from four games in the north group.

Put in, the Foxes were flying from the word go as Cameron Delport blasted 27 from 14 balls before sending up a skier off Olly Hannon-Dalby. Four balls later, Dom Sibley took a smart catch at cover to remove Neil Dexter but the fielder might soon have reflected that he had have been better off dropping it as Raine launched his onslaught.

He raced to 50 from 21 balls, reaching his half-century in the midst of a barrage which brought 20 from four balls from off-spinner Sibley.

Raine sustained his punishment of a Bears team which was untypically ragged in the field.

He dominated a third-wicket partnership of 142 in 66 balls with Mark Cosgrove (42, 41 balls, one six and three fours) and departed, having skied a return catch to Colin de Grandhomme, to a standing ovation from the home fans who appreciated the quality of Raine's hitting even at the expense of their own team.

Under immense pressure from the word go, Birmingham took 17 from the first over but that pressure soon took its toll.

Ed Pollock (25 from 14 balls) was bowled by Colin Ackermann's third ball before Raine's day got even better as his fourth and sixth deliveries removed Ian Bell and Sam Hain, caught at deep fine leg and extra cover respectively.

Raine had not finished, taking a fine catch to remove the dangerous de Grandhomme, and when skipper Grant Elliott was stumped off spinner Callum Parkinson's second ball, the Bears' last vestige of hope disappeared.

The Foxes' perfect day ended with Parkinson rifling through the lower order for a T20 career-best four for 20.

Tim Bresnan played the starring role with both bat and ball to guide Yorkshire to a 10-run win over Durham in their Vitality Blast North Group match at Emirates Riverside.

The Vikings elected to bat, and although they struggled for timing in large portions of the innings, late striking from Jonny Tattersall (36) and Bresnan (28 not out) guided them to a total of 157 for six from 20 overs.

Durham appeared in control of their chase courtesy of a solid start, but they were to lose wickets at vital times of the innings as pressure from Bresnan and Steven Patterson forced mistakes from their batting line-up.

Bresnan held his composure in the final over to secure the win for the visitors, restricting Durham to 147 for six with figures of two for 19 from four overs.

Tom Kohler-Cadmore blasted an innings of 164 on his last visit to the Emirates Riverside. On this occasion he lasted just six deliveries when he was caught by Paul Collingwood at first slip in James Weighell's first over.

Harry Brook found his form at the crease with three boundaries early in his innings.

Pressure started to build on the Vikings' batsmen as Collingwood, Imran Tahir and Will Smith dried up the boundaries, the former also removing Adam Lyth.

Brook's attempt to cut loose from a Collingwood delivery resulted in his dismissal for 38 when he was caught by Weighell at long-off.

Gary Ballance ended his side's boundary drought at 26 balls, but he became Collingwood's next victim as he looped a catch straight back to the veteran all-rounder with a failed ramp shot.

Yorkshire's struggle to find the rope continued as they endured a 27-ball drought before Tattersall found a gap in the field.

He used guile and power to propel the Vikings' innings over the 150-run mark with the aid of Bresnan as Weighell and Nathan Rimmington proved to be expensive in the closing stages.

Rimmington struck in his final over to remove Tattersall, but the Vikings still posted a competitive score.

Durham skipper Tom Latham got his side off to a rapid start in their response, drilling Jack Brooks for four straight boundaries from his first over.

The hosts made steady progress to reach 42 without loss at the end of the powerplay. Graham Clark notched the first six of the innings in the ninth over, planting a Lyth delivery into the stand over deep square-leg.

The Jets positioned themselves in a solid position, but Yorkshire began their fightback after the halfway stage.

Latham fell for 42, slicing a pull shot to Jack Leaning on the leg-side boundary. Clark then followed for 39 in a similar manner as he attempted to drive Matthew Fisher over the rope, only to be caught by Lyth.

The Vikings kept the pressure on as Liam Trevaskis was run out for only two, setting up a tense finish.

Bresnan turned the match in the favour of Yorkshire by striking twice in two balls to remove Smith and Collingwood.

Durham required 15 runs to win from the final over, but Bresnan held his nerve to secure Yorkshire's second win of the competition.

Dillon Pennington picked up four wickets in two overs as Worcestershire maintained their 100 per cent winning start in the Vitality Blast in a rain-reduced encounter with Northamptonshire at Blackfinch New Road.

The England Under-19 paceman destroyed any hopes the Steelbacks had of reaching a steep 131 target in nine overs after taking the new ball.

Pennington, who only made his debut in the competition against Derbyshire Falcons on Sunday, dismissed Ben Duckett, Josh Cobb, Richard Levin and Steven Crook and finished with four wickets for nine runs.

His efforts helped the table-topping Rapids to make it four wins out of four with a 41-run success in a competition where they have never reached finals day.

A mid afternoon downpour left the ground under pools of water but umpires Jeremy Lloyds and Ian Blackwell decided that play could finally get under way under leaden skies at 7.30pm.

The Rapids were put into bat on the same wicket as had been used for last week's thrilling success over Birmingham Bears.

Northamptonshire paceman Ben Sanderson gave the Rapids a helping hand by conceding four wides from his second delivery in an opening over costing 11 runs.

Joe Clarke set the tone for the Rapids innings by smashing Rory Kleinveldt over long-off for six but in the same over fellow opener Martin Guptill (nine) holed out to mid-off.

Australian left-hander Travis Head, on his Blast debut for Worcestershire, flicked Brett Hutton through midwicket for four to get off the mark and the powerplay of 2.4 overs realised a total of 39 for one.

Clarke and Head both hit a six in Graeme White's first over before the former on 28 from 13 balls perished off a skier to long-on.

Head hammered three sixes and four fours in his 37 off 14 deliveries before he sliced a catch to backward point off Seekkuge Prasanna.

Then Ross Whiteley carried on the display of powerful hitting with an unbeaten 36 from 15 balls with one six and five fours.

Pennington made a quickfire breakthrough for the Rapids as Duckett nicked his first delivery through to wicketkeeper Ben Cox.

Then later in the same over Cox went away to his right to pull off a superb catch to account for Cobb (nought) with just one run on the board.

Pennington's second over brought another double success as Levi (14) was caught at deep midwicket and the next delivery trapped Crook (nought) leg before wicket.

Pat Brown then got in on the wicket-taking act by bowling both Prasanna and Kleinveldt, for four and two respectively.

Steelbacks skipper Alex Wakeley hit a 20-ball half-century but it was too little, too late as his side closed on 89 for six.

Kent avenged last month's Royal London One-day Cup final defeat by securing a breathless three-run Vitality Blast win over Hampshire at Beckenham.

It was Kent seamer Mitch Claydon who held his nerve at the death when, with six needed for a Hampshire win, a near-perfect yorker restricted the visitors to a single that sparked Kent celebrations for a third win in four starts.

Hampshire, who have now lost their first three Blast games, made a disastrous start to their pursuit of 210, losing James Vince, Colin Munro and Sam Northeast in the first seven balls.

Rilee Roussouw, Hampshire's Lord's century-maker and man of the match, teamed up with fellow left-hander Tom Alsop to counter attack with a brace of sixes but Roussouw heaved at a Claydon slower ball to edge to Sam Billings and leave Hampshire on 74 for four.

Alsop, who hit 72 in the RLODC final, maintained the high tempo by taking 12 off Imran Qayyum's first over of spin but, in attempting an audacious reverse lap he was bowled by Calum Haggett to go for 41.

Liam Dawson and Lewis McManus added a quickfire 55 in 5.3 overs before the latter sliced high to extra cover to go for 38 and give Joe Denly figures of three for 37.

Dawson posted a 30-ball 50 but, in fading light and with 45 required from the last 24 balls, the pressure started to mount. Haggett and Brathwaite sent down a tight over, but Brathwaite leaked 14 in his final over to leave the visitors to score 16 off Claydon's last over.

Dawson chipped away with two more boundaries and with five needed off the final delivery, Claydon delivered a near perfect Yorker to limit Dawson, who finished unbeaten on 75, to a single.

Batting first after losing the toss, Kent posted 210 for four due, in large, to an unbeaten 95 from skipper Billings.

The England ODI player hit seven fours and five sixes in his 54-ball stay that beat his previous T20 best of 78*.

Home opener Denly departed for 18 in the fifth when he become Chris Wood's 100th T20 victim. Then, in the next over, Heino Kuhn scooped a Ryan Stevenson slower ball to mid-on as Spitfires ended the powerplay on 50 for two.

Billings accelerated with a six off Gareth Berg, who then conceded a no-ball free hit enabling Daniel Bell-Drummond to deposit another maximum over the ropes at long-on with 20 coming off the over.

Kent's third-wicket pair added 66 in 7.2 overs before Bell-Drummond, on 46, drove a low full-toss from Stevenson to James Vince at cover.

Billings slog-swept Wood for successive sixes to reach his 33-ball 50 with three sixes and as many fours. It was his 14th half-century in the format.

Billings and Alex Blake posted the highest stand of the innings, adding 70 in five overs before Blake was run out by Wood's direct hit.

Carlos Brathwaite and Billings clubbed leg-side sixes in Berg's final over as Kent maintained a scoring rate in excess of 10 an over.

Dan Christian produced another match-winning performance as Nottinghamshire cruised to a third consecutive Vitality Blast victory in a rain-affected match against Derbyshire.

Outlaws skipper Christian made 62 from 40 balls and then took three wickets to condemn the Falcons to a 39-run Duckworth-Lewis defeat at Derby - their third successive loss in the North Group.

Tom Moores smashed 53 from 25 balls in Nottinghamshire's 175 for eight from 19 overs, with Lockie Ferguson taking four wickets for 26 runs.

Although Calum Macleod made 48, the Falcons' pursuit of 179 fell well short at 139 for nine.

The hosts went into the game needing inspiration after their poor start to the competition and Ferguson delivered with four wickets in his first two overs.

Will Frain was beaten for pace in the fourth over before Steven Mullaney, who had pulled Ravi Rampaul for six, was deceived by a slower ball and bowled for 20.

Moores flat-batted Rampaul for another six over long-off but Ferguson struck a big blow in the seventh over when he bowled Samit Patel for three and then had Billy Root well caught at point by a diving Wayne Madsen to reduce the Outlaws to 59 for four.

But Moores and Christian counter-attacked with leg-spinner Matt Critchley bearing the brunt of the assault as Moores pulled him over wide long-on for six, before Christian drove him out of the ground.

Moores completed a 24-ball 50 but then failed to clear long-on and although Christian launched Critchley for another six, Paul Coughlin and Jake Libby went cheaply before rain halted play for 45 minutes.

Nottinghamshire added 10 from seven balls to leave the hosts chasing a revised target and Ben Slater took 14 from Harry Gurney's first over before pulling Christian to deep midwicket.

Christian then ran out Alex Hughes with a direct hit from mid-off but the Australian all-rounder was on the receiving end when Critchley took four fours from his second over.

Gurney returned to bowl Critchley for 19 and Madsen made only six from 14 balls before he was lbw reverse sweeping Patel as the Outlaws turned the screw.

Gary Wilson sliced a drive to cover, Wahab Riaz failed to clear wide long-on and although MacLeod struck some defiant blows, a disciplined display in the field meant the visitors were never threatened.

Chris Cooke gave a masterclass in lower-order hitting to carry Glamorgan to a two-wicket victory over Essex off the last ball of a dramatic final over at Chelmsford.

The South African wicketkeeper-batsman hit a four from Neil Wagner's final delivery to give Glamorgan, chasing 168, their second Vitality Blast South Group win of the season.

Cooke ended with 60 from 29 balls, including four sixes and three fours, having put on 61 for the ninth wicket with Timm van der Gugten from just 28 balls.

Adam Zampa had done his best to rein Glamorgan in and give Essex a second win with three for 17 from four overs.

Essex had been undone after being asked to bat when they suffered another spectacular collapse, losing their last eight wickets for 50 runs in just 40 deliveries, falling from 117 for two to 167 all out.

And that after an opening stand of 48 from 32 balls between Adam Wheater and Varun Chopra, and another between Tom Westley and Ryan ten Doeschate of 62 from 27 deliveries for the third wicket.

The loss of Ravi Bopara to a suicidal run-out and Ten Doeschate next delivery for a 28-ball 43 that included three sixes, prefaced the rapid decline.

Michael Hogan bowled four miserly overs for 22 runs and two wickets, and was backed by Graham Wagg's two for 30 at the height of Essex's misfortunes.

Glamorgan had made steady progress in their reply until Wagner was introduced for his Essex Blast bowling debut. With his fourth ball he had Usman Khawaja swishing at one down leg-side to be caught behind.

Colin Ingram found himself tied up in knots by Zampa, and in frustration swept the Australian leg-spinner straight into Chopra's hands at backward square-leg for just two.

Zampa then did for David Lloyd, who played all around one and was bowled, He might have had a third but Chopra dropped a simple chance at deep square-leg when Aneurin Donald was on 27.

Donald had just smacked his second six in a Simon Harmer over that went for 15. But he became Wagner's second victim when, having hit 37 from 21 balls, he was caught by Harmer at deep square-leg.

Kiran Carlson went for an enterprising 23 when he got a thick edge at Sam Cook to Zampa at third man.

When Bopara had Wagg and Andrew Salter bowled in successive deliveries in an over that went for just two runs, Glamorgan were on the verge of suffering a collapse of their own.

They were 107 for seven, still 61 runs from their target with 34 balls left, but then the fireworks began.

Craig Meschede gave himself room and was bowled to give Zampa his third wicket, his final over conceding just three runs.

Cooke then took over, hitting Bopara for six to cow-corner, adding a second and third off Wagner, and a fourth off Bopara. His fifty came off just 24 balls.

Suddenly 11 were needed off the last over. Cooke reduced the target to six from four balls, then five from three, four from two and two from the last ball.

A wide from the sixth delivery tied the scores before Cooke hit the winning boundary to cow-corner.

Ian Cockbain's unbeaten 43 off 22 balls led Gloucestershire to a four-wicket Vitality Blast South Group victory over Somerset with five deliveries to spare at Bristol.

In a match reduced to 11 overs per side by rain before the start, the visitors ran up 114 for eight after losing the toss, with Corey Anderson hitting 40 off 17 deliveries and handy contributions from Lewis Gregory (19), Steve Davies (17) and Johann Myburgh (14).

Andrew Tye claimed three for 24 from three overs, while Tom Smith (two for 21) was on a hat-trick at one stage.

In reply, Gloucestershire made 116 for six from 10.1 overs. Cockbain, who hit four fours and two sixes, was well supported by Kieran Noema-Barnett (25) and Jack Taylor (19).

The game did not begin until 8.15pm and hopes of a 12,000 crowd were dashed by the bad weather leading up to the start.

But there was still a large crowd to witness the derby clash, in which the hosts were seeking quick revenge for a six-wicket defeat by their arch-rivals at Taunton a week earlier.

Gloucestershire fielded poorly that night. This time they were aided by a stunning Miles Hammond catch at extra cover to break an opening stand of 27 between Myburgh and Davies.

More good work from Michael Klinger's men led to Cockbain running out Myburgh with a direct hit at the bowler's end from backward point and the skipper holding onto a sharp chance at the second attempt to dismiss Roelof van der Merwe.

From 48 for four at the end of the sixth over, Gregory and Anderson lifted the tempo with sixes off Smith, whose previous over had seen James Hildreth and Peter Trego dismissed with successive balls.

Anderson then hit two maximums in the 10th over, sent down by Ryan Higgins, and when Tye, whose first two overs had cost only 10, went for 14 off the last, Somerset had a challenging score.

Gloucestershire's hopes suffered a blow in the first over of their reply when Klinger, who had already hit a straight six, got an inside edge to Craig Overton and was caught behind.

Fellow opener Miles Hammond fell to Max Waller and after two overs the home side were 13 for two. The power plays were 3.2 overs and Noema-Barnett's six off Gregory helped the hosts to 32 for two, compared to Somerset's 32 for one at the same stage.

The powerful Noema-Barnett looked threatening before clothing a Gregory full toss to extra cover. And when he departed Cockbain took charge with sixes off Gregory and Trego, whose over, the seventh of the inning,s cost 19.

Higgins was caught at extra cover off a van der Merwe full toss with 34 still needed, but Taylor hit Jamie Overton for a two sixes and a four in the ninth over and Gloucestershire had the necessary momentum to clinch victory.

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