Mullaney tees up Notts triumph
Steven Mullaney returned career-best figures of 4-29 as Nottinghamshire Outlaws collected their second Yorkshire Bank 40 victory of the season, defeating Kent Spitfires by seven wickets in a rain-interrupted match at Trent Bridge.
An unbeaten 50 from James Taylor, who will represent England Lions against New Zealand from tomorrow, helped the home side to a revised target of 140 in 19 overs with 15 balls unused.
Thanks largely to Mullaney, Kent were limited to 220 for six after being inserted, Rob Key top-scoring with 62 and Brendan Nash adding 42 before bad weather delayed the reply for around two hours.
Notts lost Michael Lumb in the second over of their reply, shortly after the left-hander had registered his 5,000th run in one-day cricket.
Both Alex Hales and Samit Patel fell to boundary catches, but Taylor and Riki Wessels sped their side over the line with an unbroken stand of 67 in just 6.2 overs.
Former Notts seamer Charlie Shreck, playing his first List A match in three years, conceded 18 in the 16th over and Taylor then hit Matt Coles for three consecutive fours to seal a victory that takes his side top of Group A.
Kent’s innings was disrupted by the accurate medium-pace of Mullaney. The 26-year-old was the key figure as the visitors lost their way after a second-wicket stand of 97 between Key and Nash.
Both succumbed to Mullaney, as did Darren Stevens and Sam Northeast in a spell that saw four wickets fall for 34 in 10 overs.
Operating in tandem with the economical Graeme Swann, Mullaney’s nagging line and length induced some reckless dismissals, although Chris Read’s stumping to remove Stevens was top-class.
Patel held two fine catches, after earlier firing in the throw from deep midwicket which ran out Sam Billings in just the second over.
Geraint Jones and Ben Harmison provided some late fireworks as the final 10 overs realised 88 runs.
Jones lofted Patel over the leg side for the only maximum of the innings, then despatched the left-arm pace of Harry Gurney for three boundaries in a row before being caught at mid-off.
Heavy showers arrived during the interval between innings and again early in the Outlaws reply, causing several readjustments to the eventual Duckworth/Lewis target.