Glos Fall Short in Rain-Affected Battle
27 July 2021
Worcestershire made it two wins from as many Royal London Cup group matches with an 11-run victory over Gloucestershire under DLS in a rain-affected game at Bristol.
The visitors posted 228 for seven from 40.3 overs after losing the toss, opener Jack Haynes leading the way with 59, off 61 balls, with 7 fours and a six.
After three interruptions, Gloucestershire were finally set a target of 94 from 11 overs and could manage only 82 for four, Graeme van Buuren making 38 not out.
Eighteen-year-old left-arm spinner Josh Baker bowled the penultimate over for just four runs, taking the wicket of Jack Taylor to effectively settle the outcome.
Worcestershire began the game brightly, despite losing Brett D’Oliveira, on 14, caught at backward point off Josh Shaw’s second ball of the game with the total on 33.
By the end of the ten-over powerplay, the visitors were nicely placed on 66 for one, Haynes having taken advantage of the fielding restrictions with some well-timed shots.
But the opening ball of 11th over, the first sent down by left-arm spinner Tom Smith, turned enough to for Tom Fell to edge to wicketkeeper Ben Wells.
Haynes went to an impressive half-century off 52 balls, but was caught soon afterwards when miscuing a pull shot off Matt Taylor.
Boundaries dried up as Taylor bowled tightly in tandem with the left-arm spin of van Buuren.
At the halfway stage of their innings, Worcestershire were 134 for three. But van Buuren then struck twice in as many balls.
Jake Libby, who had played sensibly for his 33, was caught and bowled driving, while Ed Barnard elected to sweep his first delivery and fell lbw.
Gareth Roderick, back at his old county, found a positive partner in Josh Dell as they added 55 for the sixth wicket. Roderick then played a loose defensive shot and was bowled by Shaw.
It was 194 for six off 34 overs when the first rain brought a 90-minute delay. The game was initially educed to 41 overs per side and, on the resumption, Dell quickly fell to Smith for 32, caught at extra cover.
Midway through the final over of the innings, heavy rain forced another long delay. Play restarted at 5.35pm, with Gloucestershire’s target then reduced to 115 from 14 overs.
Chris Dent, back leading the side after surgery on a hand, struck three boundaries in the first, which cost Charlie Morris 15 runs.
Worcestershire skipper Joe Leach responded by having Ben Charlesworth caught at short third-man and Tom Lace taken in the covers as the second over ended with the score 20 for two.
Dent was caught behind for 25 looking to force Adam Finch off the back foot before another shower stopped play at 46 for three off 5.5 overs.
That led to another revised target and Gloucestershire needed 48 more from 31 balls. The diminutive van Buuren crashed Finch over point for six, but Leach bowled an over for just five runs before Baker’s ice cool contribution.
All-rounder Graeme van Buuren said:
"It was an opportunity lost. I thought we had the game well in hand, but things didn't pan out for us at the end.
"There was a bit of bounce in the wicket, which made it tough to line up a bowler or a particular delivery. It was a hybrid pitch, which had been played on, and a bit sticky when it came to facing spin.
"But there are no excuses. We have to back ourselves to recover from the poor start in this competition because we have a lot of experienced players and we need to all stick together."
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