Edgbaston's Most Recent Finals Days
Domestic cricket’s biggest day returned to Edgbaston for the third time in 2009 and fourth in 2011. Read on for a report of what happened.
This year’s semi-finalists Northants Steelbacks, again kicked off the Finals Day programme against Sussex Sharks, with the former setting the latter 137 to win after skipper Nicky Boje top scorred with 34 off 29 balls. Murray Goodwin held the Sharks’ innings together in response, hitting 10 fours in his 80 not out off 67 balls. Good support from Rory Hamilton-Brown secured a seven wicket victory for the Sharks with two balls to spare.
Kent took on Somerset in the second semi-final, with all-rounder Darren Stevens proving to be the star of the 2007 champions’ innings, with 77 off 51 balls. In response, Somerset’s former international openers of Marcus Trescothick and Justin Langer put on 73 for the first wicket, including a 32-ball 56. A further partnership of 57 between Hildreth and de Bruyn proved enough to see Somerset home by seven wickets with seven balls to spare.
Somerset won the toss and became the third team in the day to elect to field first. After removing the dangerous Goodwin in the second over, Luke Wright and Rory Hamilton-Brown took the score on to 48 off 6.3 overs, until Wright was run out by Kieswetter for 20. A dominant 59 off 26 balls from Dwayne Smith ensured that Sussex added more than 100 off their final 10 overs to post 172 for seven off their allocation.
After Trescothick and Langer took a blistering 43 of the first 21 balls, Somerset collapsed to 63 for 4 off 9.2 overs. A good recovery by Trego and de Bruyn left the West Country men requiring 69 off 33 balls until Trego’s departure off Hamilton-Brown triggered another collapse; this time with the final six wickets falling for just five runs in 17 balls. Sussex ended up being crowned as champions for the first time by an emphatic 63 runs.
The 2011 Finals Day will down as arguably the most thrilling in the competition’s history, including ties, super overs and Duckworth Lewis.
In a rain-reduced first semi-final, Lancashire Lightning won the toss against the Leicestershire Foxes and struck immediately by removing Josh Cobb with the first ball of the match. After being reduced to 34 for 3 after 4.1 overs, the Foxes fought back to post 132 for 6 off the allotted 18 overs. Stephen Moore played a key innings of 43 in Lancashire’s chase of 80 off 11 overs, but after falling one run short, the super over was enforced.
Batting first in the super over, Lancashire’s Stephen Moore and Stephen Croft took 13 off the over from Claude Henderson. Will Jefferson and Josh Cobb ensured the Foxes returned to Finals Day though by taking Gary Keedy’s first five balls for 16.
The second semi-final saw a repeat of the 2010 Final, with defending champions Hampshire taking on 2003 winners Somerset.
A blistering 80 off 42 balls from Pakistan all-rounder Shahid Afridi helped Hampshire to 138 for 4 off 15.5 overs before the rain intervened. In response to the Duckworth Lewis total of 95 off 10 overs, Somerset incredibly also fell one run short, resulting in a second super over of the day.
Despite the might of Afridi and Vince in the one over eliminator, Hampshire could only take five runs off Alfonso Thomas’ over and fell 11 runs short of the 16 runs posted by Somerset’s Kieswetter and Buttler.
A second wicket partnership of 70 in nine overs between Razzaq and Jefferson held the Leicestershire innings together as they went on to post 145 for 6 off their 20 overs. In response, Somerset reached 84 for 2 in the 12th over when the introduction of Josh Cobb turned the game around for the 2004 champions.
Cobb went on to remove Hildreth, Trego, Buttler and Thomas in a devastating spell of four overs, four wickets for 22 runs to secure an 18 run win for the Foxes in the very last match played by the county’s legendary wicketkeeper, Paul Nixon.
A small number of tickets for Friends Life t20 Finals Day on Saturday 17th August remain available following a return from the four semi-finalists. Simply click here or call the 24-hour Ticket Hotline on 0844 847 1902 to purchase.