Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cricket: Durham Take Their Revenge; Lancashire Cannot Repeat Wins over Cook's County

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cricket: Durham Take Their Revenge; Lancashire Cannot Repeat Wins over Cook's County

Article excerpt

Byline: LUKE EDWARDS

LANCASHIRE Lightning failed to strike twice against Durham Dynamos in the Friends Provident Trophy as Geoff Cook's side secured a vital win at the Riverside yesterday, writes LUKE EDWARDS.

Durham certainly owed Lancashire one. A fortnight ago Steven Croft hit a six off the final ball to secure a dramatic victory at Old Trafford.

That agonising defeat was followed by a comprehensive thrashing in the County Championship, but Graham Onions, who had sunk to his knees in despair as Croft sent the ball high over the boundary rope, ensured there was no repeat.

Lancashire - who were without England pair James Anderson and Freddie Flintoff, as well as Pakistan international Mohammad Yousuf because of a visa problem - needed 11 runs from the final over. Onions conceded just six, this time having Kyle Hogg caught by Callum Thorp at third man as he attempted the big hit to swing the game in Lancashire's favour.

It was fitting that Thorp should be involved in that crucial wicket. The Australian, in his first appearance at the Riverside this season, went for only 14 runs from his 10 overs and it was his tight bowling at the close which forced Lancashire into taking riskier shots.

There were also three wickets for Steve Harmison, of which two were crucial. Mal Loye had been badly dropped by Gareth Breese in the slips when he was on just 32 and it looked as though that lapse - it was the second simple chance spilt by Breese who also put down Paul Horton - would be costly.

But Harmison returned to the attack to remove both Loye and Croft, who had moved ominously on to 48 with the visitors needing less than seven an over.

Given that Breese is supposedly a one-day specialist there would have been a cruel irony if his mistake had brought Durham's defence of the Friends Provident Trophy to an end.

Instead, this win over the North Group leaders maintains their interest in the competition and home wins over Scotland and Derbyshire will be enough to put them into the knockout stages.

However, it would be a mistake to assume that everything is rosy in Durham's garden at the moment and there are some worrying trends developing in their batting. …

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