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Foxes stay in the hunt

Yorkshire Bank

Jacques Du Toit

Jacques Du Toit ensured Leicestershire's pursuit of Durham's 190 got off to a flying start as he clattered 64 off just 37 balls

Leicestershire kept their slim hopes of a Clydesdale Bank 40 semi-final place alive with a comprehensive seven-wicket win over an out-of-sorts Durham at the Riverside in Group A.

Needing 190 to win after Durham had performed poorly with the bat, the Foxes took just 26 overs to claim their second success of this year's 40-over competition.

Victory was largely the result of some dynamic hitting from openers Jacques Du Toit and Andrew McDonald, who plundered 14 boundaries from the opening eight overs in Leicestershire's reply.

The score had raced to 122 for two by the time both departed, with the result no longer in doubt.

McDonald made 46 before holing out to Dale Benkenstein at deep midwicket, while Du Toit smashed 64 off just 37 balls, including two huge leg-side sixes in one Neil Killeen over.

South African Du Toit looked like winning the game himself as he hammered Killeen and Mitch Claydon to all corners of the ground, but his assault ended when he was caught by Ben Harmison on the boundary.

That gave England hopeful Liam Plunkett his first wicket of the afternoon, and a second followed when Josh Cobb edged behind.

Paul Nixon and James Taylor saw Leicestershire home, to ensure Durham remain five points behind leaders Warwickshire in Group C.

The writing was on the wall from a very early stage of a one-paced Durham batting effort that never really got going until it was much too late.

The hosts made just 114 off the first 30 overs, and while they rallied from that point onwards, the damage had been done.

Sam Cliff claimed three early wickets to prevent Durham generating any momentum, luring Phil Mustard into a clubbed catch to mid-on, tempting Michael Di Venuto into a drive that was edged to slip and forcing Benkenstein into a mistimed shot that Du Toit took at the second time of asking at midwicket.

Ben Stokes also went cheaply – the 19-year-old's fine run of form ended when he was trapped leg before for four – and when Ben Harmison departed two runs short of a half-century after providing Du Toit with his second catch of the afternoon, Durham were reeling on 110 for five.

They mounted a recovery, largely thanks to the efforts of Gordon Muchall and Gareth Breese, who made 43 and 42 respectively.

Breese hit six fours before lobbing a catch to Matthew Boyce in the deep, while Muchall displayed commendable composure before he became Matthew Hoggard's only victim in the final over of Durham's innings.