Friday, June 6th, 2014

Mitchell Leads On Song Rapids To Third Successive Win In T20 Blast

Mitchell Leads On Song Rapids To Third Successive Win In T20 Blast

 Worcestershire Rapids skipper Daryl Mitchell led his side to a third successive win in the NatWest T20 Blast with a sparkling half century in the five wicket success over Leicestershire Foxes at Grace Road this evening.

The Rapids were set a challenging 165 target on a slow pitch after the Foxes had elected to bat.

But Mitchell reproduced the stunning form he has shown in the LV = County Championship this season to guide the Rapids home with four balls to spare.

Worcestershire required eight off the final over from Rob Taylor but a six and a four off the first two balls by Mitchell settled the issue.

The 30-year-old finished unbeaten on 67 from 50 balls with six fours and one six but there were useful contributions down the order from Richard Oliver, Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Colin Munro and Ross Whiteley.

Worcestershire made one change from the side which defeated holders Northamptonshire Steelbacks with Kohler-Cadmore replacing Moeen Ali after his England call-up for the first Test with Sri Lanka at Lord's.

Leicestershire opener Niall O'Brien had an early scare when he was adjudged to have just made his ground in the first over from Jack Shantry after taking a quick single with Brett D'Oliveira's throw shattering the stumps and flying away for four overthrows.

Josh Cobb lofted Shantry for two sixes in his second over but then Chris Russell was rewarded with a double success after switching ends.

First Shantry pulled off a superb one-handed leaping catch at mid off to dismiss Cobb (27) and then O'Brien (15) pulled Russell straight to Mitchell at mid-wicket.

It became 90-3 when Mitchell held onto a return catch from Greg Smith (24) and on the same total Ned Eckersley (24) chipped Munro to Mitchell at extra cover.

Mitchell bowled a tight spell of 4-0-26-1 before Saeed Ajmal struck with successive balls.

Scott Styris (27) was caught on the cover boundary by Oliver and then Taylor was adjudged lbw for a duck hitting across the line. The Pakistan star finished with 2-23 in his four overs.

Some lusty late blows from Tom Wells, with 45 not out off 27 balls, lifted the Foxes up to 164-6 in their 20 overs.

Oliver gave the Rapids innings a quickfire start with three boundaries in the opening over from Jigar Naik.

The Shropshire captain had a let off on 16 when he miscued a Nathan Buck delivery back over the head of the bowler only for Taylor to fail to hold onto a low chance.

But having scored 22 out of 26 off 13 balls with five fours, Oliver was bowled by Raine in the third over.

The 50 came up in the sixth over and Worcestershire stood on 57-1 at the end of the powerplay.

Kohler-Cadmore made a rapid 23 before he played the paddle sweep against Naik and was caught around the corner by Buck.

Munro showed his liking for spinner James Sykes with two towering straight sixes in an over costing 19 runs as the Rapids reached 90-2 by the half-way stage.

The 100 came up in the next over but Munro, on 32 from just 18 balls, was caught at third man by Naik off Buck.

Worcestershire needed 34 off the last five overs with seven wickets in hand.

Alexei Kervezee (7) drilled Taylor into the hands of Cobb at extra cover but Mitchell reached his 50 off 41 balls with four boundaries.

Whiteley (13) sucumbed to Raine in the penultimate over – caught at long off by Smith – but Mitchell ensured there were no late scares for the Rapids.