Warwickshire recorded their first Royal London One-Day Cup win of the season in emphatic style with a nine-wicket victory over Leicestershire Foxes at Edgbaston.
After restricting the visitors to 237 for nine on a good batting pitch with a very short boundary on one side, the Bears cruised to victory with 54 balls to spare.
It was game over after openers Sam Hain (105 not out, 124 balls, 12 fours, one six) and Will Porterfield (75, 83 balls, 12 fours) added 169 in 29.2 overs.
Hain completed his maiden List A century in only his third game, vindicating Warwickshire’s decision to give the 20-year-old an opening batsman role in limited-overs cricket this season.
For the Foxes, the misery in 50-over cricket goes on. Having failed to win a single game in the format last season they have now started with two defeat this time round and sustained an additional blow at Edgbaston with a serious injury to Niall O’Brien.
The Irish international was just three balls into his innings when he was stretchered off in great pain after suffering an apparent Achilles injury in mid-run.
Put in, the Foxes lost Neil Dexter, lbw to Olly Hannon-Dalby, to the third ball of the innings but a third-wicket stand of 92 in 17 overs between Kevin O’Brien and Mark Cosgrove (34, 49 balls , three fours) laid a sound foundation.
The former struck 77 from 70 balls (seven fours, three sixes) before becoming part of a 23-ball implosion which brought four wickets and the injury to his brother. Boyd Rankin began the clatter by yorking Cosgrove. Kevin O’Brien, his concentration perhaps affected by having just seen his brother carried off in distress, paddled Jeetan Patel to short fine leg. Lewis Hill and Tom Wells edged to slip.
Rob Taylor’s aggressive 62 (66 balls, one four, four sixes) ensured his team something to bowl at but the total was soon looking woefully inadequate as Hain and Porterfield put 100 on the board in 20 overs.
Porterfield was more assertive at first before Hain, after a slow start, began to match him stroke for stroke. Thoughts of a ten-wicket victory vanished when Taylor trapped Porterfield lbw but Laurie Evans (45, 39 balls seven fours, one six) biffed his first ball for four and was soon peppering the boundary.
It was just a question of whether Hain would have time to reach his ton – which he did with the winning runs – a six off Jamie Sykes.