Batting collapse costs Steelbacks as Outlaws claim T20 victory

Mohammed Azharullah claimed two wickets against NottsMohammed Azharullah claimed two wickets against Notts
Mohammed Azharullah claimed two wickets against Notts
A dramatic batting collapse saw Northants Steelbacks slump to a two-run defeat in the Barbados T20 Cup final against Notts Outlaws on Sunday evening.

Chasing Notts’ modest 131 for four at the Kensington Oval, Steelbacks looked to be cruising to victory at 98 for three in the 14th over with Ben Duckett and Steven Crook well set, but then the wheels fell off on a tricky surface.

Duckett was dismissed for 34 by Harry Gurney, and the Steelbacks proceeded to lose four wickets for 12 runs to slip to 110 for seven, with key man Crook sixth out for 38.

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Northants still had the chance to win it as they recovered to 129 for eight, needing three to win from the final three balls of the innings, but Ben Sanderson was run out for four and then Gurney dismissed Ollie Stone with the next ball and the County were all out two runs short.

Aside from Duckett and Crook, the only other batsman to make any headway was teenage opener Saif Zaib who made 25 from 14 balls.

Gurney finished with fantastic figures of three for 14 from three overs, while Steven Mullaney and Matthew Carter claimed two wickets apiece.

Earlier, the Steelbacks produced a tidy bowling display to restict Notts to 131.

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Pick of the attack was Azharullah who claimed two for 22, while there were also wickets for Stone and Tom Sole.

Top scorer for Notts was Greg Smith who grafted to an unbeaten 67 from 63 balls, while Mullaney hit 21 and Michael Lumb 20.

Steelbacks had reached the final by beating Barbados in the semi-final, while Notts saw off Hampshire in their semi.

Northants now have a couple of days off before facing Barbados in a 50-over match on Wednesday, and they then face Nottinghamshire in a two-day game on Friday.

The squad returns to Northampton next Sunday.

Northants team: Zaib, Rossington, Duckett, Wakeley, Crook, Murphy, White, Sole, Stone, Sanderson, Azharullah.