Stokes salvo in vain for Durham
Ben Stokes re-wrote Durham's one-day record books with a superb unbeaten 150 but still finished on the losing side as Warwickshire stepped up their defence of the Clydesdale Bank 40 title at Edgbaston.
Stokes' innings was the highest by a Durham player in one-day cricket, surpassing the 145 that former England batsman John Morris made against Leicestershire in a Benson & Hedges Cup match 16 years ago.
However, Warwickshire's batsmen also enjoyed themselves on a flat pitch to seal a seven-wicket win.
Ireland captain Will Porterfield and Varun Chopra launched the run-chase with an opening stand of 144 in 18 overs and Mohammad Yousuf and Darren Maddy then accelerated Warwickshire to their fourth win in six matches with an unbroken fourth-wicket partnership of 109.
Chopra passed 1,000 runs in all cricket this season in his stylish 83, made from just 70 balls, although he was out-scored by Porterfield, who turned a 30-ball 50 into 80 from just 52 deliveries.
Last week Porterfield and Chopra shared a Warwickshire one-day record opening stand of 189 against Leicestershire - and a severely-depleted Durham attack was no match for them today.
The visitors did manage to dislodge the openers and Jim Troughton but there was no respite for their bowlers as Yousuf swept Warwickshire to victory with 21 balls to spare thanks to a brutal unbeaten 74 from 55 balls.
The visitors' total of 286 for three was their highest one-day score against Warwickshire and it owed much to Stokes and support from Gordon Muchall and Dale Benkenstein.
Muchall passed 50 for the fifth time in six matches this season and shared a third-wicket stand of 157 in 24 overs with Stokes before he holed out to long-on chasing a second six.
Benkenstein played a resourceful innings, with 42 not out from 27 balls, while Stokes was at his most aggressive.
The 19-year-old left-hander used superb timing and brute strength to flay a toiling Warwickshire attack as he converted a run-a-ball half-century into an 88-ball hundred.
Stokes’ 150 was then brought up from just 113 balls when he scrambled a single from the last ball of the innings.
His seven sixes included an audacious reverse paddle off slow left-armer Paul Best, which landed halfway up the Eric Hollies Stand.
Stokes, who toured the West Indies with England Lions earlier this year, also drove Maddy for a six out of the ground over long-on in an innings of controlled aggression.