Saturday, June 18th, 2016

Clarke Hits Maiden T20 Half Century But Rapids Go Under

Clarke Hits Maiden T20 Half Century But Rapids Go Under

Joe Clarke hit his maiden half century in NatWest T20 Blast cricket but Worcestershire Rapids went down by four wickets to Notts Outlaws at New Road.

Clarke made an unbeaten 69 off 48 balls with five fours and one six and gradually accelerated as the Rapids set the Outlaws a 165 target after being put into bat.

But former Worcestershire T20 player Andre Russell and Dan Christian featured in the decisive partnership of 64 in six overs as the Outlaws won with seven balls to spare.

Worcestershire welcomed back Moeen Ali from England duty and the fit again duo of skipper Daryl Mitchell and paceman Matt Henry.

The Rapids were put into bat and Tom Kohler-Cadmore and Moeen put on 54 in the six over powerplay.

Kohler-Cadmore struck Harry Gurney for six over point and a cover drive for four off Jake Ball brought up the half century stand.

Steven Mullaney's first delivery accounted for Kohler-Cadmore who was bowled after making 30 off 20 deliveries.

Moeen lofted England one-day spinner Samit Patel for a straight six in an over costing 14 runs.

But after making 40 from 27 balls the England player went for a big hit off Mullaney and was caught by Andre Russell at long off.

The Rapids reached 86-2 by the half-way point of their innings.

Russell returned for a second spell and Ross Whiteley (6) was bowled by a slower delivery.

Mullaney bowled his four overs straight through and finished with the impressive figures of 2-22.

Alexei Kervezee (4) attempted to pull Ball and was caught behind by Riki Wessels.

Clarke increased the momentum with a straight six off Ball and went to his 50 off 38 balls with two fours and one six.

Brett D'Oliveira (4) fell on the mid wicket boundary off a Russell full toss in the penultimate over.

There was an eventful start to the Outlaws reply with Riki Wessels dropped off a Moeen no ball from the first delivery of the innings and Michael Lumb caught off the free-hit.

Clarke produced a stunning one-handed catch at extra cover to dismiss Lumb (12) off Joe Leach.

Then former Worcestershire loanee Alex Hales smote Ed Barnard for four to get off the mark but holed out to mid on from his next delivery.

Riki Wessels looked in good touch and made 36 off 26 deliveries before being caught at long on off Moeen

But in the same over Outlaws skipper Dan Christian struck the spinner for two huge sixes over long off.

D'Oliveira kept the Rapids in contention by bowling Samit Patel (4) and Gregg Smith (0) with successive deliveries at 95-5 in the 12th over.

But then came the Christian-Russell partnership which swung the game in the Outlaws favour.

Russell's 41 occupied just 25 deliveries before, with just six needed, he was caught at long on.

Christian finished undefeated on 53 as the Outlaws secured victory after 18.5 overs.