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Royal London One-Day Cup: Graham Clark and Alex Lees give Durham a winning start |  Cricket News


Forerunners Graham Clark and Alex Lees club Durham to their best One Day Cup score as they beat Kent at Beckenham; Surrey, Glamorgan, Essex and Leicestershire also win as 2021 tournament kicks off

Last updated: 07/22/21 19:57

Graham Clark shattered a century as Durham surpassed 400 in their One-Day Cup win over Kent at Beckenham

Graham Clark and Alex Lees forged an astonishing 241-point opening partnership to reach Durham’s highest-ever score by beating Kent by 102 points at Beckenham on day one of the 2021 Royal London One-Day Cup.

Clark – whose A-list average sits around the 21 mark – clubbed a brutal, career-high 141 on just 119 balls, including 22 limits, with fellow opener Lees ably backing him with a 101 plus measured on 98.

Aussie batsman Cameron Bancroft and David Bedingham both added quick 60s on less than 40 balls as Durham posted a mammoth 405-4, breaking the previous 2014 record of over 50 points.

All-round veteran Darren Stevens, 45, was the bowlers pick with 1-50 over eight overs, but it was a day to forget for Kent on the field as they made four catches and were appropriately punished with a total of 225 points added by hitters after being abandoned.

Chris Rushworth, 35, took three quick wickets for Durham – all caught by Scott Borthwick on the slip – to eliminate the chase bite, and despite George Munsey’s confident 96 and Harry Finch’s stubborn 64, Kent was second best by distance.

Glamorgan a narrow two-wicket victory over Warwickshire in Cardiff, surpassing the opposing team’s total of 221 with just two balls remaining.

Opener Chris Benjamin’s 50 and captain Michael Burgess’s 73 were the only real scores of Warwickshire’s innings, with Michael Hogan’s 2-25 and Joe Cooke’s 3-35 on 10 particular bowlers’ strengths.

Glamorgan lost three points to 41, but skipper Kiran Carlson (61) and Joe Root’s brother Billy (50) stabilized the ship.

Roman Walker and Michael Hogan then saw the Welsh outfit at home despite 17-year-old Barbadian spinner Jacob Bethell’s solid 4-36 numbers.

Surrey facilitated to a victory of five Group B wickets over Yorkshire in Scarborough, sealed with over 10 overs remaining.

Alec Stewart’s side won the draw and played, knocking out the hosts for 165 after just 34.1 overs thanks to Gus Atkinson’s excellent 4-43 on his A-list debut and spinner Dan Moriarty’s 2-45 economical over their respective 10 overs on a fast, bouncy pitch.

Matt Revis, with a run-a-ball 43, and Gary Ballance, with 39, were the only batsmen to pass 15 as Surrey kept the pressure on with consistent wickets.

Mark Stoneman – recently returned from a loan at Yorkshire – then anchored the pursuit of Surrey, finishing on a vigilant 73 without the support of captain Hashim Amla (29), who scored 10,000 points in this format; Yorkshire’s Mat Pillans won 4-57 against his former club, but that wasn’t enough to prevent a comfortable win.

Leicestershire withstood a wonderful 116 shot from opposing captain Billy Godleman as they beat Derbyshire at Grace Road.

Godleman, on his return from an absence from cricket, hit ten fours and two sixes in a lavish inning – his seventh ton in the format – but Brooke Guest (40), Harvey Hosein (38) and Matthew McKiernan (20) were the only others topped double digits as Arron Lilley’s 3-49 kept Derbyshire below 275.

Rishi Patel and Nick Welch started long before Welch, 23, suffered a serious knee injury in a fall and was lying on a stretcher after being treated in the field for 10 minutes.

Despite the blow, Australia’s Marcus Harris hit 75 and first-time captain Lewis Hill 51 as Leicestershire surpassed the necessary total with 21 balls left to play.

A Tom Westley 69 helped Essex beat comfortably Hampshire by three wickets on a scorching afternoon at the Ageas Bowl.

The home team have recovered well from an early termination of Tom Perst, with Nick Gubbins, Joe Weatherley and Lewis McManus reaching their 50s, but Jamie Porter’s stingy 1-31 and Simon Harmer 3-42 have limited Hampshire to 273.

Skipper Tom Westley arrived at 8-2 and hit 12 fours in a good 69, with solid but unspectacular support from Paul Walter and Michael Pepper before Harmer and Aron Nijjar took over with the team faltering at 221 -7.

But the pair of spins – which had previously taken five wickets between them – remained calm with a 54-partnership to push Essex over the line with five-and-a-half passes to spare, securing a win on Day 1.

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