Porterfield destroys Panthers
Gloucestershire Gladiators all but ended Middlesex Panthers' hopes of reaching the Friends Provident t20 quarter-finals with a six-wicket victory at Uxbridge.
Chasing a challenging 186 to win, William Porterfield and Aaron Redmond launched Gloucestershire’s pursuit of 186 with an opening partnership of 78 in seven overs.
Steven Finn, playing his first match since he bowled England to victory in the second Test against Bangladesh at Old Trafford in June, was their main target as they carted him for 30 runs in two overs.
Neil Dexter, the Middlesex captain, stemmed the flow of runs by bowling Redmond and having Hamish Marshall caught behind in the space of seven balls.
Porterfield, who had hit 64 off 32 balls with three sixes and seven fours, was then unluckily run out when Franklin’s drive was deflected into the stumps at the bowler’s end.
However, Franklin and Chris Taylor regained the initiative with a fourth wicket stand of 61 in six overs as the former hit an unbeaten half-century to see the Gladiators home.
Middlesex, beaten by Hampshire on the same club ground the day before, owed their total to Dawid Malan’s, who crashed 86 off 44 balls after David Warner and Jackson Thompson departed inside the first four overs.
Warner, the Australia Twenty20 specialist, who has made just 188 runs in 11 innings for Middlesex, was caught and bowled by Steve Kirby for one and Thompson, an India-born left-hander who once played for Gloucestershire, was caught at extra cover off Anthony Ireland for 14.
Owais Shah gave the innings some momentum, following his 80 against Hampshire with 27 off 19 balls, before he was brilliantly caught on the midwicket boundary by Gemaal Hussain off Richard Dawson.
Dexter then struck 38 off 30 balls as he joined Malan in a fourth-wicket partnership of 85 in eight overs, before being dismissed by Kirby.
Tyron Henderson was caught by Marshall Ireland and three wickets went down in the last over with Scott and Smith running themselves out, before Malan was bowled trying to hit Kirby through cover.