Northants Steelbacks 2nd XI v Birmingham Bears 2nd XI at Finedon 03 May 2016

Match 1

Northants Steelbacks 2nds 106-8 (20 overs)

Birmingham Bears 2nds 107-5 (19 overs)

Birmingham Bears (2 points) beat Northants Steelbacks (0 points) by 5 wickets

Two wickets in Jones’ second over gave Birmingham the perfect start to their first T20 match after Northants had won the toss and decided to bat with openers Munsey and Zaib falling within three deliveries.

Gordon dismissed Steelbacks skipper, Keogh for fifteen and Thomason maintained the early pressure with the wicket of ‘keeper Kendall as they reached the innings’ mid-point on 57-4.

Poysden then bowled Edwards for five before the innings’ largest partnership of thirty five between Stone 15 and Arthurton 33 was brought to an end by Gordon, while Hannon-Dalby’s two wickets in the final over helped restrict the home team to 106-8 from their twenty overs.

In reply, Umeed and Mellor went cheaply, but Evans 20 and Coleman 30 kept the Bears up with the required rate and despite losing Webb 8, Javid 21* and Thomason 8* saw Birmingham home to a five wicket victory with an over to spare.

Match 2

Northants Steelbacks 114-6 (20 overs)

Birmingham Bears 118-1 (16.1 overs)

Birmingham (2 points) beat Northants (0 points) by 9 wickets

Birmingham Bears won the toss in the second match and put Northants in to bat and were quickly rewarded with the early wicket of Zaib, caught by ‘keeper Mellor off Hannon-Dalby for nine.

As in the first match, the home side struggled against the accurate Bears’ attack as Munsey fell to Thomason Arthurton was trapped lbw by Poysden as Northants reached 49-3 at the half-way point in the innings mid-point. Poysden struck for a second time when Kendall was lbw for eight and Edwards fell to Brookes for four before Keogh and Stone took Northants from 68-5 in the thirteenth over to 109-6 when Hannon-Dalby had Stone 22, lbw in the final over of the innings.

Skipper, Keogh was undefeated on 39 from 38 deliveries as Northants’ innings closed on 114-6.

Requiring a little less than a run-a-ball for victory, Umeed and Mellor started brightly and with the help of some welcome extras, reached 36-0 after the opening six overs and completing the first half-century partnership of the day in the ninth over with Mellor in particular attacking the home bowling, reaching sixty six after ten overs.

The opening pair had extended their partnership to ninety four before Umeed fell to Panesar for thirty eight in the fourteenth over.

Evans immediately took Birmingham past 100 with two sixes off Sole, while Mellor completed his half century from fifty one deliveries whilst taking the scores level before another boundary from Evans saw the Bears complete a nine wicket victory with twenty three balls in hand.