Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Durham Cream Proves Too Rich

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Durham Cream Proves Too Rich

Article excerpt

Byline: By Luke Edwards

Few sports attach so much importance to facts and figures as cricket and there was plenty for the anoraks to get excited about at the Riverside yesterday.

This Friends Provident Trophy victory over Lancashire was Durham's first in this competition in any of its differing guises. It was achieved with a team which, for the first time in the county's history, contained three present England internationals.

And it was a game which also contained the first referrals to a third umpire by a Durham captain, which under new rules allow them to contest an umpire's decision. A footnote, however, should be inserted into the history books pointing out that neither was successful.

Not that Durham needed them as their much-vaunted bowling attack demolished Lancashire's top order, despite a confident start from Mal Loye and Mark Chilton.

There is not a county attack which can boast more firepower than Durham's when they can name Steve Harmison, Liam Plunkett and Graham Onions on the same team sheet. Lancashire push them close, with Andrew Flintoff, Sajid Mahmood and James Anderson, but ultimately Durham's was by far the better on the day.

Harmison, making a mockery of those who argue he can not play one-day cricket, set the tone with an opening spell of five controlled overs which brought one wicket and conceded just 14 runs. He made the breakthrough with only his second ball, Chilton beaten by his extra pace and bounce, to edge to Phil Mustard behind the stumps.

Lancashire were intent on attacking from the start, with Loye sweep-slogging Neil Killeen out of the attack with three sixes in as many overs. But when Loye sliced a wide Plunkett delivery to Paul Collingwood at backward point, Lancashire lost their way.

Australian dangerman Brad Hodge was undone by a pearl from Plunkett, which nipped back and took out his off stump before Gareth Breese ( tight and controlled ( lured Flintoff into a rash shot which was caught, on the run, by his close friend Harmison. …

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