Nottinghamshire vs Kent
An unbeaten ton by Heino Kuhn followed a clinical performance with the ball by Kent which helped them thump defending champions Nottinghamshire by nine wickets in the first quarterfinal of the Royal London One Day Cup at Trent Bridge, Nottingham on Thursday (June 14). Harry Podmore picked up a four-wicket haul to restrict the hosts to 255 for 8. Kuhn then scored 124 and was involved in a 194-run opening stand with Daniel Bell-Drummond which helped Kent enter the semifinal for the first time since the Royal London cup replaced the ECB 40 tournament in 2014.
Asked to bat first, Nottinghamshire suffered a top order collapse as Podmore accounted for three of the first four wickets to fall, leaving the hosts reeling at 23 for 4 in the 10th over. Skipper Steven Mullaney tried to rebuild the innings and he received support from Samit Patel and Billy Root, with whom he added 70 and 79 respectively. While Mullaney became the seventh to depart, after a fighting 90 off 108, Luke Fletcher hit an unbeaten 53 off 34 deliveries to help Nottinghamshire finish with a total in excess of 250.
However, the first-innings total proved far too less as Kent's top-order batsmen came up with a commanding display. Kuhn registered his third hundred in this edition of the competition - his 114-ball knock included 13 fours and two sixes. Bell-Drummond (79 off 73) was the only wicket that Kent lost while they raced away towards the target. Joe Denly's 52 not out off 28, with the help of four fours and five sixes, provided the finishing touches to a dominating performance from Kent, who won with 14.1 overs to spare.
Brief scores: Nottinghamshire 255/8 in 50 overs (Steven Mullaney 90, Luke Fletcher 53*; Harry Podmore 4-57) lost to Kent 257/1 in 35.5 overs (Heino Kuhn 124*, Daniel Bell-Drummond 79, Joe Denly 52*) by 9 wickets.
Essex vs Yorkshire
Yorkshire sealed their semifinal berth against Essex in fine fashion, registering a 25-run win in the second quarterfinal on Thursday (June 14). Opting to bat, Yorkshire were reduced to 5 for 2, losing Tom Kohler-Cadmore off the second ball of the innings for a golden duck as James Porter struck. Harry Brook was then castled by Matt Coles in the next over with the visitors in trouble.
Gary Ballance, however, took matters into his hands and notched up a stellar 91 off 113 balls, which comprised of seven fours and two sixes to keep Yorkshire in the game in order to get to a defendable total. Ballance fell in the 39th over with 174 on the board. Yet, Yorkshire managed to finish with 259 on the board owing to lower-order contributions from Jack Leaning (57), Tim Bresnan (41) and Matthew Fisher (35*). Porter was the pick of the bowlers for Essex, returning 3 for 25 in nine overs.
In reply, Essex got off to a steady start, but wickets at regular intervals pegged them back in the end, being bowled out for 234 in 49.1 overs. Skipper Steve Patterson led the attack with a four-wicket haul, conceding just 36 in the process. 'Keeper Adam Wheater was the only batsman to manage a half-century, while Varun Chopra (37) and Neil Wagner were the next-best as Essex fell short in the end. Wagner offered resistance towards the end, even scoring at a good pace for his run-a-ball 35, but there was too much left to do in the end.
Brief scores: Yorkshire259/7 in 50 overs (Gary Ballance 91, Jack Leaning 57, Tim Bresnan 41; James Porter 3-25) beat Essex234 in 49.1 overs (Varun Chopra 37, Adam Wheater 78, Neil Wagner 35; Steven Patterson 4-36) by 25 runs.