Lancashire Lightning claimed a record-breaking victory against Derbyshire to enhance their quest for quarter-final place in the Fruends Life t20
Overseas pair Junaid Khan and Farveez Maharoof led a slick display with the ball and in the field as Lancashire continued their t20 revival with an easy ten-wicket victory over the Falcons at Old Trafford today.
After Friday’s crucial win over Durham, the Red Rose restricted Luke Sutton’s troops to a paltry 81-8 after the former Lancashire wicketkeeper had elected to bat upon winning the toss.
Pakistan left-arm seamer Junaid took three wickets for the first time in his career and Maharoof struck twice as the visitors struggled to cope with a good mix of pace from the home attack.
Sajid Mahmood and spinners Stephen Parry and Gary Keedy also picked up wickets.
Red Rose openers Stephen Moore and Tom Smith then continued their impressive alliance at the top of the batting order with their fifth stand of fifty or more in this year’s competition.
They shared an unbroken 82 to complete the win with a mammoth eleven overs to spare.
It was only the seventh time a team has won by ten wickets in the history of English Twenty20 cricket, with Lancashire, who have now done it twice in five matches, laying claim to three of those.
In fact, this was actually the quickest ten-wicket win in English history.
Moore finished with 54 not out off 33 balls and Smith 26 not out off 21.
“That was a perfect game we played,” said Maharoof, who returned figures of 2-13. “We outclassed them in every department.
“Twenty20 cricket is all about momentum, and that is what we got in the first few overs. We didn’t let them in after that. We have four more games left, and we probably have to win all four (to be sure of qualification).”
Left-hander Chesney Hughes top-scored for the Falcons, who posted their lowest total in the history of this competition, with only 16.
Junaid struck in his first two overs before returning to strike in the last over of the innings to complete the visitors’ misery.
He had both Wes Durston and Garry Park caught behind by Gareth Cross before bowling Jon Clare.
“Junaid has been bowling really well ever since he came,” continued Maharoof. “He has been a plus point for our team. With his experience of swing and slower balls, he has been quite effective.”
Sri Lankan Maharoof, who took the new ball, had dangerous New Zealander Martin Guptill caught at mid-on by Junaid before bowling Hughes off an inside edge.
Mahmood had Wayne Madsen caught at backward point by Steven Croft with a delivery that lifted sharply from back of a length before Parry had Ross Whiteley caught at deep mid-wicket and Keedy accounted for Sutton caught and bowled for a duck.
Hughes slog-swept Keedy for six, which was one of only four boundaries in the innings.
Derbyshire’s misery was highlighted by the fact that Moore hit as many sixes as Derbyshire did boundaries in their innings.
The opening batsman punished Durston, Clare and Tim Groenewald by hitting strongly in the 'V', while Smith was dropped off the bowling of Durston at mid-off by Guptill.
“The net run-rate might count, so finishing it within ten overs is a big plus point for us,” added Maharoof. “Totals like that, you have to play really positive to chase. Sometimes if you go with a negative mind it will hurt you, so we were very positive in the first six overs.”
Lancashire, who face Notts Outlaws at Old Trafford next Sunday, are now just one point behind fourth placed Worcestershire Royals with a game in hand.
Photo (c) Clint Hughes
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