Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Dismal Dynamos See End of Their Twenty 20 Season Steelbacks through to Quarter-Finals

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Dismal Dynamos See End of Their Twenty 20 Season Steelbacks through to Quarter-Finals

Article excerpt

Byline: Luke Edwards

AND so that is that. Durham Dynamos' dismal Twenty20 campaign came to a fittingly dire end as Northamptonshire Steelbacks cruised to the win which secured their place in the last eight.

It says more about the dragged-out nature of this year's tournament than Durham's ability that, had they beaten Leicestershire Foxes last Friday rather than suffer a wash-out, they would have gone into this final game with an outside chance of reaching the quarter-finals themselves. They would have been horribly exposed if they had.

In truth, the Dynamos have been more like a slow moving cog, churning its way through a tournament which needs to be trimmed back next summer rather than dragged out in a vague attempt to rival the Indian Premier League.

There is simply too much Twenty20 cricket played over too long a period at the height of the English summer, regardless of what the game's administrators will tell you.

In terms of crash, bang, wallop, with the odd exception, most notably Ross Taylor and Phil Mustard's batting, Durham's Twenty20 effort this year has been up there with watching paint dry and a visit to the dentist in the excitement stakes.

The return of Championship cricket will come as an almighty relief at the Emirates Durham ICG, particularly as Paul Collingwood will be making a rare appearance against Lancashire tomorrow.

It is easy to forget, given the sheer amount of Twenty20 cricket we have been subjected to this summer, that Durham remain a formidable foe in the four-day game and, with their dangerous seam attack back on their feet, they remain title contenders with two games in hand on leaders Yorkshire.

Durham's batting was full of familiar failings yesterday. Nobody scored more than 40 and nobody had the imagination or the skill to extract the most from a pitch which kept low and lacked pace.

Batting first, they needed to put pressure on Northants, but they scored slowly - just 13 runs came off the first three overs - and when Phil Mustard fell for just seven in the fourth their only spark capable of igniting the innings at the top of the order was extinguished. …

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