Nixon seals Foxes place at Edgbaston

Aaron Moores | cricket20

Veteran wicket keeper Paul Nixon helped the Leicestershire Foxes seal their first Finals day appearance since 2006 after they secured a three wicket victory over the Kent Spitfires at a packed Grace Road.

Faced with a victory target of 204 the Foxes looked on the verge of being knocked out of the tournament after they had slipped to just 128-5 in their pursuit of the Spitfires total of 203-3.

Despite the pressure Abdul Razzaq (27) and Nixon (31) steered the Foxes to an unlikely victory over the Spitfires who had looked on course for the Finals day at Edgbaston after Azhar Mahmood had smashed 91 runs from just 52 deliveries.

Andrew McDonald (53) and Jacques de Toit (24) got the Foxes run chase off to a rapid start but with wickets tumbling after a rain break the hosts challenged looked to have slipped away.

Despite the tension Razzaq smashed 27 runs from just 17 deliveries to set up a tense finish with the Foxes needing another 28 runs from just over three overs after he was dismissed by Charl Langeveldt in the 17th over.

With Razzaq gone it was left to Nixon, playing in his last game at Grace Road before he retires to steer the Foxes to victory in an amazing game which saw the wicket keeper smash four boundaries and a six to leave the hosts needing just two runs from the final six deliveries of the match.

Despite the lose of Nixon at the start of the final over it was left to Matthew Boyce (4) to hit the winning runs with four balls to spare to spark wild celebrations from the players and fans who rushed onto the pitch at the conclusion of the game.

Having recorded the 2nd highest t20 total at Grace Road the Spitfires will be left to reflect on a disappointing bowling display which included 11 wides after Azhar Mahmood and Martin van Jaarsveld (63) had helped the Spitfires record a total of 203-3.

Having meet at the crease in the 10th over the pair enjoyed a third wicket stand of 130 after the lose of openers Robert Key (28) and Joe Denly (6) to leave the Foxes facing a massive run chase.
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