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May 27, 2012
Yorkshire 186 for 2 (Ballance 103*) beat Unicorns 184 (New 83*, Starc 3-36) by eight wickets
Gary Ballance's unbeaten century carried Yorkshire to an eight-wicket win over the Unicorns at Scarborough.
Left-armers Ryan Sidebottom and Mitchell Starc took three wickets apiece as the visitors were bowled out for 184 despite an unbeaten 83 from wicketkeeper Tom New. The Tykes slipped to 26 for 2 but Adam Lyth (60 not out) joined Ballance - who hit eight fours and four sixes - in an unbroken stand of 160.
Yorkshire captain Andrew Gale put the Unicorns in to bat and Sidebottom removed James Ord in the first over for a duck before switching ends and adding the scalp of Michael Thornely, caught by Phil Jaques for 20. As wickets fell steadily, New was left as the mainstay of a score which always looked like being below par, especially once Starc removed captain Keith Parsons for 19.
From 107 for 4 at that point, the Unicorns slipped to 150 for 7 as Starc took three wickets for six runs in 3.1 overs. Former Leicestershire man New reached a 67-ball half-century in between but Moin Ashraf claimed two tail-end wickets before Sidebottom returned to pick up Steven Cheetham with the final ball of the innings and finish with 3 for 44.
Gale made 17 in an opening stand of 23 with Lyth, but he was trapped in front by Warren Lee before Jaques edged Glen Querl to New having made just 3.
Lyth hit three fours in Lee's next over, giving Ballance leeway to play himself in patiently. The Zimbabwe-born 22-year-old stepped up the pace with two sixes in successive Luke Beaven overs and soon passed Lyth's scoring rate, reaching his half-century from 58 balls before hitting Lee for two sixes and a four in successive balls.
Lyth took 71 balls to reach 50, by which time Ballance was on 98. The latter moved to three figures with a four off Bradley Wadlan from the 88th ball he faced before Lyth hit the winning boundary off Querl.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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The new stand-in captain has the makings of a long-term leader, given his ability to stay ahead of the game
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