Notts Outlaws secured their second T20 title in four years with an emotional fifty from Ben Duckett securing victory with 16 balls to spare.
Duckett had demons to banish one season on from his semi-final heartache. Here, he was majestic, sharing a boundary laden 63-run partnership with Peter Trego and bringing home the trophy in a mature stand with man of the match Dan Christian.
Notts finish the year with the best win loss record of any county since the onset of the format.
Christian’s four-fer and rapid knock of 21* was hugely influential and impacted the match at critical times. He took two in the final over to prevent a big finish as Surrey set the target, restricting them to 127/7 from their 16 overs.
Samit Patel sought to establish his big game credentials in the very first over. Restricting Surrey to a Jason Roy single, he watched on helplessly as his teammates contrived to banjax a routine run-out with Roy and Hashim Amla all at sea.
Jake Ball’s early introduction induced more jitters for the turquoise-clad openers as Roy offered Nottinghamshire’s blast debutant Peter Trego a low half-chance that went down. Soon after, he found Roy’s top edge only to see the ball flash over Tom Moores.
Moores gave Amla an extra life with a missed stumping in the fourth over, but the South African legend couldn’t grasp the reprieve, holing out to Dan Christian from the very next ball.
Jake Ball’s cutter accounted for Will Jacks as his cross-batted hit bounced between the palms of Christian who re-affirm his influence under pressure.
Laurie Evans and Jason Roy were in destructive moods and grasped their responsibility with measured maturity and occasional mercurial forays. Their supporting cast fell considerably short though.
Christian, a key influence in the semi-final, put the brakes on Surrey’s progress in the 14th over. First, his change-up slower ball was mistimed by Laurie Evans to give Duckett a routine catch at deep mid-wicket. Then, Jamie Overton stepped back to make room but Christian made the adjustment to induce an edge to give Tom Moores a chance of a catch for the cameras. The wicket keeper obliged with a diving one-handed effort of the highest order to dismiss Jamie Overton for nought.
As Surrey stumbled around him, Jason Roy lingered. The opener perished in the fifteenth over, pinned in front by Jake Ball.
When Alex Hales was dismissed from the first ball of the Notts run chase, Surrey were in the ascendancy. They compounded their advantage when Joe Clarke was caught out sweeping in the second over and when Samit Patel was caught at the longest of leg-side boundaries, Notts needed a calm head. Peter Trego, who travelled as a willing team man having not made a T20 appearance of any sort since 2018, answered the call. Included at the expense of the injured Chris Nash, Trego came it at number five, joining Ben Duckett in a precarious position.
He was adjudged leg before to Daniel Moriarty, although television replays suggested a hint of fortune on Surrey’s behalf. His 31 was telling though and he will press for a bigger role next term.
Ultimately, Notts reigned supreme and have a firm foundation on which to build as the lights fade on an extraordinary season for the sport and the club.