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Gale steers Yorkshire to victory

A 43-ball half-century by 23-year-old left-hander Andrew Gale steered Yorkshire to a six-wicket win against Durham at Chester-le-Street and kept alive their slender chances of Twenty20 quarter-final qualification.

Durham's interest in the competition ended as their modest 133 for five, after being put in, was passed with two balls to spare.

The scores were level with seven balls left, but Anthony McGrath was bowled for 29 in trying to hit the winning runs off Neil Killeen and Jacques Rudolph was unable to score off the first three balls of Gareth Breese's final over.

Yorkshire cannot overhaul group leaders Nottinghamshire, who visit Headingley tomorrow, but they can still claim the slot available for the best runners-up, although that also requires Lancashire to lose their last two games.

Left-arm spinner David Wainwright followed his three for six when the sides met at Headingley on Saturday by ending Durham's one productive period with his fifth ball.

Then Rudolph also struck in his first over of leg-spin, defeating Phil Mustard's sweep to gain an lbw decision, and from a promising 48 for one after six overs Durham were again stymied by their weakness against spin.

They collected only 45 from the eight overs shared by Wainwright and Rudolph, during which Ben Harmison was run out for 10.

Garry Park clubbed Rudolph's final ball to mid-wicket but that was his only four in contributing 23 off 26 balls to a stand of 50 in eight overs with Gordon Muchall.

Park was yorked by Darren Gough in the final over, while Muchall remained unbeaten on 41 from 37 balls.

Durham brought in Graham Onions for his first match of the series in place of Steve Harmison, who has conceded 10 an over, and Yorkshire took only three off each of the first two overs, bowled by Killeen and Onions.

Gale then went down the track to Killeen and just cleared both Muchall and the rope at mid-wicket before pulling and cutting the next two balls for four.

He hit three more boundaries in reaching 56 before he became Mustard's second stumping victim with 25 needed off five overs.

Gale was missed on 26 by Mustard, standing up to Ottis Gibson, who had Craig White caught at deep mid-wicket with his first ball.

Gerard Brophy contributed a sprightly 28 to a second-wicket stand of 41 before being stumped off Breese, Durham's most effective bowler.

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