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Smith sparkles for Lancashire

Lancashire all-rounder Tom Smith ripped the heart out of Yorkshire's batting reply to gift his side a crucial Twenty20 Cup win over their Roses rivals at Old Trafford tonight.

The 21-year-old was brought into the fold at a crucial stage of the Phoenix reply to the home side's par score of 143 for nine they were 43 for two after six overs.

Lightning batsman Brad Hodge had top-scored with a fine 49-ball 57 before Smith claimed three wickets for just 15 runs to help set up a 30-run victory.

Lancashire controlled the early part of their innings with Mal Loye and Hodge united in a second wicket partnership.

Former Sri Lankan captain and World Cup winner Sanath Jayasuriya was caught at fine leg by Tim Bresnan off the bowling of Darren Gough.

Then Loye and Hodge took the score from eight for one in the second over to 65 for two in the eighth over.

Loye, the 34-year-old former England Twenty20 World Cup hopeful, hit five fours and one six in his 26-ball innings of 38.

But it was his dismissal, caught by Chris Gilbert at long-on off Richard Pyrah, which really hastened the collapse.

With Hodge and Loye at the crease the Lightning had looked on course for a score above 200. They were 56 for one after six overs and 79 for two at the halfway stage.

But a combination of Pyrah and Twenty20 left-arm spin debutant David Wainwright really put the brakes on to bring the Phoenix right back into the game.

Wainwright, a 22-year-old who has played 10 first-class games, did not take a wicket in his four-over spell but only went for 22 runs.

Pyrah on the other hand took two wickets with his medium pace and only went for 25 runs. His second was that of Stuart Law for just seven.

South Australian Gillespie then really rammed home Yorkshire's new-found advantage with the wickets of his fellow countryman Hodge and then Gareth Cross in the same over - the 16th of the innings.

Kyle Hogg was then run out without facing a ball to leave the score 119 for six in the seventeenth and Lancashire struggled up to the 143 for nine from there.

Craig White then went in the second over of the Yorkshire reply - caught by Hodge off the bowling of Hogg - to give Lancashire renewed hope.

Gerard Brophy hit a useful 19 but was caught on the boundary by Croft at square leg to gift Hogg his second wicket in the sixth over.

And when Bresnan (15) was bowled by Smith's very first ball to leave the score 43 for three at the start of the seventh over the game was back in the home side's grasp.

Soon after the game was as good as over when Gary Keedy and Smith combined to take three wickets in five balls to shatter the visitors and reduce them to 61 for six.

Jacques Rudolph top-scored with an unbeaten 48 as Jayasuriya claimed a late three for 20.

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source - sportinglife.com

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