Notts Outlaws remain in this season’s Vitality Blast competition after securing an 8-wicket victory over Yorkshire Vikings in their final North Group match at Emerald Headingley.
The Outlaws will now make the trip to Taunton to face Somerset in the knock-out stage.
The defending champions began the evening knowing that they needed to triumph, not only over a strong Vikings side but also over a gloomy weather forecast that threatened to curtail the action.
Yorkshire made 163 for six after opting to bat first, with David Willey top-scoring with 51. Harry Gurney, with one for 16 from his four overs, was one of five bowlers to pick up a wicket.
Notts paced the run-chase to perfection, getting home with one over to spare. Alex Hales made an undefeated 71 and put on an unbroken 71 with Tom Moores, who made 43 not out.
A dry day enabled the toss to take place as scheduled at 6pm, with Yorkshire’s captain, Willey, opting to bat first.
Notts gave a T20 debut to Matt Carter and he was quickly into the action, after being asked to take the opening over.
His first ball in the format was helped down the legside for four by Tom Kohler-Cadmore but his second delivery bamboozled the right-hander and flew up for a simple catch by Steven Mullaney at midwicket.
Lyth and Willey had put on 150 against Northants just 24 hours earlier and they carefully played themselves in before unleashing some big shots.
Only 12 runs came from the first three overs but then Lyth hit the first maximum of the evening, off Luke Fletcher.
Carter was given a third over in a row and paid the price as Willey lofted him straight down the ground.
Yorkshire had reached 69 for one at the halfway stage but then looked to hit the accelerator with some hefty strokes.
Lyth advanced to 44 before falling to Mullaney’s first ball of the evening at the start of the 13th over, with Tom Moores comfortably taking a high swirling catch.
Willey had survived a stumping opportunity off Ish Sodhi’s bowling but reached his 50 from 37 balls, with two fours and three sixes.
The left-hander was then dismissed for 51, hitting Fletcher out to Hales on the fence.
Sodhi removed Gary Balance – and Gurney bowled Jordan Thompson.
Kane Wiliamson muscled his way to 44 before failing to beat a Mullaney throw from the final ball of the innings.
Notts were soon ahead of the rate, as Hales and Riki Wessels laid siege to the all-seam Vikings attack.
Wessels fell for 16 but then Jake Libby applied pressure with a stylish 30 from only 23 balls.
When he fell, stumped off Adam Lyth, it was 98 for two, but Hales and Moores gave no further opportunities to the home side as Headingley began to empty.
Hales’ 50 came from only 36 balls and Moores settled the contest with back-to-back sixes off Willey.
Notts Outlaws will take on Somerset in Taunton in their Vitality Blast quarter-final on Sunday 26 August at 3pm. Ticket information will be released as soon as possible.
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