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14th June 2008

Durham make it two wins out of two

A fifth-wicket partnership of 52 in four overs between Dale Benkenstein and Albie Morkel saw Durham through to their second win of the week in the Northern Group and sent the Foxes crashing to a second defeat in successive home games.

Batting first after winning the toss the home side posted a total of 142 for eight but the strong Durham batting line-up made light work of the chase, reaching their victory target with two overs to spare.

Once again it was a disappointing performance by the Foxes who in recent years have been Twenty 20 specialists after reaching four of the five semi-finals and twice winning the trophy.

But they were very much second best throughout this match and never really had Durham under any pressure after losing opening batsman Hylton Ackerman in the third over.

He was bowled by a ball from Shaun Pollock which kept low and shattered the stumps.

It was just the sort of start Durham needed to gain the initiative and two more quick wickets by Morkel had the home side in real trouble at 33 for six.

Only Boeta Dippenaar offered any real resistance, scoring a fine 47 off 41 balls before being caught out in the deep to provide Morkel with his third wicket.

Dillon du Preez also holed for 28 to give Morkel another wicket, the South African finishing with the impressive figures of 4-30 off his four overs.

Pollock proved he too has lost none of his skills by claiming 2-15 off four overs.

Leicestershire’s only partnership of note was a stand of 46 for the fourth wicket between Dippenaar and James Allenby but a target of 143 never really looked enough to test Durham on a slow-paced pitch.

The Foxes had a glimmer of hope when the Dynamos slumped to seven for two inside two overs but Phil Mustard and Gordon Muchall pulled them out of trouble with a stand of 65 in eight overs.

Mustard was finally caught for 32 off a reverse sweep but Will Smith hit a breezy 40 off 32 balls with three fours and two sixes and Benkenstein finished on 48 not out off 35 balls.

Morkel completed a fine all-round performance by hitting Jeremy Snape for a six off the final ball of the 18th over to clinch Durham’s victory.