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Finals Day dream is shattered
7:40pm Wednesday 25th July 2012 in WCCC
WORCESTERSHIRE failed to reach the Friends Life t20 Finals Day after falling to a 29-run defeat to Yorkshire in an entertaining quarter-final at Headingley yesterday.
Half-centuries from Joe Root and South Africa’s David Miller were added to by Gary Ballance’s 46 not out off 20 balls as the hosts racked up 212-5, just one run short of their highest score in the history of the competition.
Hughes matched his opponents with a blistering unbeaten 80 off 53 balls but compatriot Mitchell Starc led the way with the ball for Yorkshire with 3-24 to restrict their visitors to 183-6.
After losing three wickets in the first nine overs of their innings following Andrew Gale’s decision to bat first, the hosts really motored in the latter stages thanks to Miller and Ballance in particular.
Root, who picked the perfect time to score a career best 65 off 40 balls, shared 59 for the second wicket with Gale after Phil Jaques was run out four balls into the match and then 52 with Miller for the fourth. After he was caught and bowled by Aneesh Kapil, leaving the score at 126-4 after 14, the innings really exploded.
All of Yorkshire’s nine sixes, five of which went to Ballance and three to Miller (50 off 25 balls), came in the last 25 balls as 72 came off the last four overs.
The 17th over, bowled by Jack Shantry, cost 26 before David Lucas conceded 25 off the last, including four sixes.
Worcester were hampered by the loss of Vikram Solanki and Moeen Ali to Starc and Rich Pyrah inside the first three overs of their chase.
However, Hughes and James Cameron kept their side in the contest with some impressive hitting of their own in a 75-run stand for the third wicket.
Both men hit sixes before Cameron fell to a neat piece of work on the long-on fence by Root and Miller, who completed the catch after his team-mate had thrown it in the air before stepping over the rope.
It left Pyrah with his second wicket and the visitors at 95-3 in the 11th over.
Gareth Andrew briefly threatened with successive sixes over long-on off Pyrah in the 15th over of the innings but he was caught trying to repeat the dose off the impressive Azeem Rafiq (1-26) in the next, leaving the score at 143-4 with 70 still needed.
Starc returned to get Daryl Mitchell caught at mid-off and, defending 36 off the last over, Kapil bowled in what is expected to be his last appearance for the county.
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