NatWest T20 Blast: Early Standouts
Featured News | 23rd May 2014
While the Outlaws' winning start to the NatWest T20 Blast saw standout performances throughout the side, it wasn't a case of team efforts throughout the tournament's first round of fixtures.
Twenty20 cricket has always been the lure for star players, standout performers from across the world, and last week's matches saw talented individuals take centre stage.
Our search for outstanding performers begins with local rivals Leicestershire, and their star overseas signing Scott Styris. The veteran New Zealander smashed an unbeaten 63 off just 31 deliveries against Derbyshire last week, helping Leicestershire amass an unassailable total of 197-4. Styris hit seven fours and three sixes in a hugely impressive knock, and if he can continue that form for the rest of the NatWest T20 Blast campaign, which continues with a trip to Northants on Friday night, don’t bet against three time winners Leicestershire adding to their total.
Derbyshire didn’t go down without a fight however, and a large part of that was due to the efforts of a certain Marcus North, who fell ten runs short of a maiden T20 century. The 34 year old Aussie was the only Derbyshire batsman who really offered any resistance, and how; as he smashed six sixes and six fours, reaching 90 off just 47 balls. Derbyshire will be hoping North continues to be in such fine fettle as they host Lancashire at the County Ground tomorrow evening.
Another veteran impressed in Chester-Le-Street last week too, as 37-year-old Paul Collingwood struck 62 with the bat and took three wickets in an excellent performance for Durham. Collingwood’s knock came after the Dynamos were left two wickets down with just four on the board, and the former England star struck up an impressive partnership with Durham new boy Calum MacLeod to propel the Jets to a solid total of 173-4. Collingwood was just as integral with the ball however, with his three wickets costing just 29 runs as Worcestershire were skittled over for just 144. Notts fans will be hoping that the Durham skipper isn’t in such form when his county come to town next week.
A special mention must also go to the Outlaw’s star of the show last week, as Samit Patel showed the England selectors what they’re missing out on; recording his 15th T20 half century and also claiming two valuable wickets. Patel’s 56 included five fours and one huge six – and would have included another had Steven Croft not produced an unbelievable catch on the boundary to eventually sent Patel back to the pavilion. With Michael Lumb and James Taylor also looking in an imperious mood, things are looking bright for the Outlaws ahead of their clash with Worcestershire at Trent Bridge.