Jeetan Patel today reflected on the excellent all-round team performance by Warwickshire to overcome Somerset in the Royal London Cup semi-final and admitted: “I don’t think you could ask for more.”
The Bears booked a Lord’s final against Surrey on September 17 after finally subduing a talented and powerful Somerset side by eight runs.
The westcountrymen, chasing a hefty 284, kept fighting right to the end, with even last pair Tim Groenewald and Max Waller adding 42 before they were finally sunk by a brilliant last over of yorkers from Olly Hannon-Dalby.
Patel took the player-of-the-match award for his five for 43, including four quickfire wickets in the 30th, 32nd and 34th overs to eviscerate Somerset’s dangerous middle-order. Hit for a huge six by Peter Trego, the Kiwi responded by dismissing Trego two balls later and quickly adding three more wickets.
Yet again, Patel was pivotal to a big Bears win – but he was quick to highlight the resounding team effort which overcame one of the best limited-overs sides in the country.
“The way the guys batted to put Somerset under pressure, then the way all the guys bowled and fielded, I don’t think you could ask for more,” he said.
“The bowlers kept taking wickets throughout the whole innings. Somerset are real fighters and we knew they would keep coming right to the end. Waller can hold a bat very well and Grunners [Groenewald] whacks it, so we just had to keep going hard at them for as long as they came hard at us, and we did that.
“Olly bowled brilliantly and really deserved that. He’s a great death bowler. The way Chris Wright bowled too was superb and Rikki Clarke at the top and Teeqy and Josh did their bit – it was just a fantastic effort all-round.”
The Bears fans in the big Bank Holiday crowd were getting a little nervous when Trego pummelled Patel into the Hollies Stand to take the score to 145 for three. But two minutes later, Trego was on his way back to the pavilion and Patel on his way to adding a first limited-overs five-for to his nine four-fors.
“It was a good hit from Trego,” he said. “Belly said to me ‘how did he get that?’ but that’s what limited-overs cricket is all about. You are get hit for six sometimes but it’s a matter of how you come back from that.
“As a team we really delivered and it was a great day for us with great support from the fans which we really appreciate. After the disappointment of missing out on Twenty20 Finals Day, and missing some opportunities in the championship, to have a chance to win a trophy at Lord’s in the 50-over comp is just fantastic.
“Now it all comes down to a one-off game against Surrey and they are a good side but as long as we keep putting in what we put in, we have got a great chance.”
Tickets – Royal London One-Day Cup Final
Tickets for the Royal London One-Day Cup Final are available direct from the Lord’s Ticket Office by clicking here, priced from £30 to £50 for adults and £5 for juniors. Tickets can also be booked over the phone on the Lord’s Ticket Hotline – 020 7432 1000.