An outstanding performance from the Notts Outlaws bowling unit paved the way for the team to record a third consecutive victory in the NatWest T20 Blast.

After winning the toss Durham Jets opted to bat first but were skittled out for only 123 in just 18.1 overs at Chester-le-Street.

Samit Patel, who was named man-of-the-match, led the role of wicket-takers, with three for 18.

Luke Wood took two for 15 and there were also successes for Ish Sodhi, Jake Ball, Harry Gurney and Steven Mullaney, with Mullaney also helping to pull off a stunning run out.

Chasing only 124 for the points, openers Alex Hales and Riki Wessels bit off a sizeable chunk of the target with a partnership of 69 before Hales fell for 44, made from 22 balls with 10 fours.

Wessels stayed until the end and was unbeaten on 49 as Brendan Taylor sealed the win with a huge six to take his score to 33 and take the total to 129 for one with 24 balls still remaining.

Speaking after the game bowling coach Andy Pick was more than pleased with the display.

“We put in a good performance there. Luke set the tone, taking two wickets in an over and they never recovered and we didn’t give them the chance to recover," he said. 
“They’ve had some tough times up here this season and whatever motivates them I don’t know but it must be tough to keep coming out, especially when you aren’t winning but we had to turn up and do what we can do. Finishing this a bit early helps with the run-rate as well, so it’s all very pleasing.
“There were areas that we could probably have been a bit sharper on but overall you’d take that, especially here, where our record isn’t the greatest. So it’s nice to be on the right side of things.
He added: “We seemed to start slowly in this competition and whether it was the change of format that took a bit of getting used to or the change of some personnel, but whatever it is hopefully we can win again tomorrow and we’ll be in a good position.”

Notts did their work early on, reducing the home side to 65 for six inside the first nine overs. Only Graham Clark, who made 41, showed the necessary appetite, with all the other top order batsmen failing to make double figures.

Wood began the carnage by removing Cameron Steel from his first ball of the night, at the start of the second over; the opener hit tamely to Dan Christian at cover.

Three balls later the young left-armer was celebrating again as Paul Collingwood departed for a second-ball duck, clipping a leg-side ball straight to Gurney at short fine leg.

Christian, playing the 200th match of his T20 career, rotated his bowlers at regular intervals and struck gold virtually every time.

Clark and Michael Richardson added 46 for the third wicket but their stand was broken from the final ball of the six-over powerplay with Richardson chopping Ball onto his stumps.

From 54 for three it became 58 for four when Clark nicked Patel behind to Tom Moores. The young ‘keeper excelled throughout and this was the first of three high-class dismissals he was involved in.

The ninth over produced two wickets in two balls as Jack Burnham hit Patel to Christian and then Stuart Poynter was bowled first ball.

Ryan Pringle and Paul Coughlin added 39 before Notts struck again and made decisive inroads to remove the bottom order.

Mullaney had Pringle caught on the deep square leg fence for 19 and then the same bowler pulled off a brilliant piece of fielding from his own bowling to whip the ball into Moores’ gloves to run out Coughlin for 23.

The wicketkeeper then stumped Barry McCarthy off Sodhi and Chris Rushworth hit the first ball of the 19th over straight to Mullaney at mid-off to give Gurney a wicket as well.

Hales and Wessels began the chase in style, leathering their way to a formidable 50 stand in just 5.1 overs and reached 64 for none from the first six overs.

Trevaskis made the breakthrough, getting one to keep low and bowl Hales as the England international backed away to give himself some room to cut.

Taylor joined Wessels and manipulated the bowling in his usual unorthodox manner, dabbing, reversing and upper-cutting to help take the total into three figures by the end of the 12th over.

Under little pressure as they closed in on a meagre target the two batsmen reached their goal at the end of the 16th over with Taylor hitting Pringle for the game’s only maximum, high over midwicket.

The unbroken second wicket stand had been worth 60 with Wessels, following up his 110 and 14 not out, at the weekend, finishing just one short of his half century in another impressive performance.

The Outlaws’ third victory in a row lifts them on to six points in the north group and within touching distance of the qualifying positions, ahead of Wednesday evening’s home encounter with Worcestershire Rapids.


Buy your tickets for all six of Notts Outlaws’ remaining NatWest T20 Blast North Group games – played between July 26 and August 18 – here.