Birmingham Bears v Northamptonshire Steelbacks, NatWest T20 Blast
The Bears recoded a fourth consecutive win in their group when defeating the Steelbacks by eight wickets at Edgbaston with Varun Chopra making an unbeaten half century
Birmingham Bears v Northamptonshire Steelbacks t20 Edgbaston June 19th 2014
A superb four over spell at the start of the Steelbacks’ innings from Rikki Clarke 1-8 from his four overs combined with Chris Wright’s pace at the opposite end saw the Bears take control from the start and never relinquish the advantage.
Wright picked up a wicket with his first delivery when Levi’s top edge went so high that Clarke could get himself perfectly positioned to take the catch and then Coetzer edged to Chopra at slip in the same over.
Clarke then had Keogh caught low at slip by Chopra and with runs at a premium, Patel trapped Willey lbw attempting a pull.
37-4 in the ninth over, the Steelbacks looked to David Sales and Steven Crook to get them going, but having doubled the score in less than five overs, Sales was brilliantly caught by Ateeq Javid for twenty three off Recordo Gordon.
Crook and Ben Duckett added forty seven from twenty seven balls until Duckett tamely found Shoaib Malik off Wright for twenty one.
Gordon’s penultimate over of the innings went for just three runs and the wicket of Spriegel who lost his middle stump to a fast low full toss, before the innings closed on 133-7 with Crook unbeaten on fifty one.
In reply the Bears’ openers Varun Chopra and William Porterfield, set about the Steelbacks’ attack, racing along at ten runs an over and making light work of the target before Porterfield was bowled by White for forty two when giving himself room to cut.
Azarhullah got a ball to stop in the pitch to remove Jonathan Trott for a single, but Shoaib Malik 21^ and Varun Chopra 62* saw the Bears home by eight wickets and with four overs to spare.