T20 Blast: Notts Outlaws top group after crushing win over Worcestershire

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Alex Hales’ 50 was his 53rd in T20 matches, to go with four centuries

Alex Hales smashed a half-century off 18 balls as Notts Outlaws moved to the top of North group with a 10-wicket win over Worcestershire at Trent Bridge.

Samit Patel (3-4) and Jake Ball (3-17) helped restrict the visitors to 86-8, with only two fours in their innings.

Hales hit two sixes and 11 boundaries and finished on 60 not out as the Outlaws reached 89-0 in just 6.2 overs.

Elsewhere, there were wins for Gloucestershire and Leicestershire, while the game at Hove was abandoned.

The umpires decided the Sussex v Glamorgan game could not go ahead because of a wet outfield following a 17:30 BST inspection.

It denied Sussex the possibility of giving Ollie Robinson his first game since he was suspended from international cricket because of racist and sexist tweets he posted in 2012 and 2013 were shared online, having included him in their squad.

The Sharks remain, however, the only unbeaten side in the competition following three wins and three no-results.

Hales produces demolition job

The game between Worcestershire and Notts at New Road 13 days earlier ended in a thrilling tie, but there was no likelihood of a repeat after the Rapids made a disastrous start to their innings.

Spinner Patel took 3-3 from his first two overs and his second wicket – that of Tom Fell, who was stumped by Tom Moores after the keeper initially fumbled the chance – was his 100th in T20 games at Trent Bridge.

Jake Libby made 29 before he was caught at point, but only three other batsmen reached double figures as Worcestershire registered their joint second lowest total in a T20 match.

The Notts openers were in no mood to hang about as they began their reply – and 27 came off the third over, bowled by Ish Sodhi, which Hales ended 4-4-6-4-6 after Joe Clarke (26 not out) took three runs from the opening delivery.

Hales reached his fifty by powering a short, slower ball by Ben Dwarshuis over mid-on for four and ended the game by despatching Ed Barnard over cover.

In the same group, Leicestershire Foxes made it two wins out of two, having lost their first five matches, with a 42-run victory over Derbyshire Falcons.

Opener Scott Steel hit 46 off 34 balls, but the Foxes were struggling on 80-5 before Louis Kimber and skipper Colin Ackermann (37) added 71 in eight overs.

Kimber reached a 27-ball half-century – his first in the T20 Blast – with back-to-back sixes off Fynn Hudson-Prentice (3-36) before being caught at deep mid-wicket for 53.

Louis Kimber
Louis Kimber’s previous highest score in T20 cricket was just 10

Leicestershire’s 174-8 looked in danger as Harry Came (40) and Luis Reece launched the reply with a 60-run partnership but both fell in the same over and the Falcons could not maintain their momentum as they slumped from 83-2 to 92-6.

They were finally all out for 132 in the 19th over when Brooke Guest (27) skied Naveen-ul-Haq to square leg.

South leaders Kent beaten

Kent have won more games – five – than any other side in this season’s T20 Blast and remain top of South group, but they were on the receiving end of a eight-wicket defeat by Gloucestershire at Bristol.

England batsman Zak Crawley gave the Spitfires a positive start with 43 off 29 balls, but despite Jordan Cox’s unbeaten 36, keen Gloucestershire fielding, typified by Chris Dent’s magnificent boundary catch to remove Darren Stevens, saw them finish their 20 overs on 147-7.

Dent continued his fine game by hitting two sixes in his 37 off 21 as he and Miles Hammond (33) launched the run-chase with a rapid opening partnership of 54 before he was superbly stumped by Cox off a wide.

Jordan Cox
Jordan Cox dived to take the bails off before Chris Dent could regain his ground

Ian Cockbain made 30 before having to retire hurt with an ankle injury, but New Zealander Glenn Phillips saw Gloucestershire to 149–2 in the 14th over.

He ended the game with two successive sixes off Joe Denly, the second an audacious switch-hit over extra cover, for an unbeaten 41 off 25 balls, and Gloucestershire remain fourth in the group, now only two points behind Kent.

Coming next

Wednesday

Durham v Northants Steelbacks, Chester-le-Street (18:30 BST)

Yorkshire Vikings v Worcestershire Rapids, Headingley (18:30)

Surrey v Somerset, The Oval (18:30)

Thursday

Middlesex v Essex Eagles, Lord’s (18:15)

Birmingham Bears v Derbyshire Falcons, Edgbaston (18:30)

Gloucestershire v Glamorgan, Bristol (18:30)



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