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15th June 2024 T20 Blast

Lees and Clark get Durham off to a flyer before lightning abandons play

Torrential rain scuppered any chance of Notts Outlaws building on Friday’s first win of the season, forcing their North Group clash with Durham to be abandoned with just five overs possible at Trent Bridge.

Wet weather early in the day meant the scheduled 2.30pm start was put back to 4pm, with the intention to stage a contest of 17 overs per side.

Outlaws skipper Joe Clarke won the toss and elected to bowl first, after which Durham openers Alex Lees and Graham Clark enjoyed a flying start, putting on 58, of which 28 came in two overs from England paceman Olly Stone.

Clark picked up two boundaries in Stone’s opening over and another two in his second, before pulling a huge six into the Fox Round stand.

New Zealand left-armer Ben Lister completed the fifth over of the Durham innings – the minimum each side must face to constitute a match – but then rain returned with a vengeance, accompanied by thunder and lightning.

It was a short-lived storm, barely lasting a quarter of an hour, but it deposited so much water on a playing area with little capacity to absorb more that umpires Paul Baldwin and James Middlebrook had no option but to call the game off, ironically during the sunniest weather of the day.

The Outlaws, who had broken their duck for the season against Worcestershire on Friday night by exceeding their DLS target by one run in another rain-affected contest, take another point for a no-result.

Bottom of the table with only three points at the halfway stage, the Outlaws would seem to have little chance of qualifying for the knock-out stages. Yet in an open group in which no team apart from leaders Lancashire Lightning has more than six points, a string of wins in the second half of the season could still see them go through.

The same applies to Durham, third from bottom but on five points only one behind second-placed Yorkshire Vikings.

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