Durham hold nerve for final-over win
Durham 142 for 6 (Starc 2-21) beat Yorkshire 140 for 8 (Rushworth 2-20) by two runs
Yorkshire recovered from 42 for 5 but still lost by two runs to Durham in an exciting finish to their opening Friends Life t20 match at Headingley.
Needing 14 off the last over to reach their target of 143, Yorkshire appeared to have the game in the bag as Azeem Rafiq drove leg-spinner Scott Borthwick's first ball for six and lashed the next to the extra-cover boundary for two. But only two runs came off the next two deliveries and when Rafiq let the fifth ball go by outside off stump it mean four were required from the last delivery, which the batsman could only hit for a single.
Durham's opening bowlers, Chris Rushworth and Graham Onions, made it tough for Yorkshire early on with a couple of wickets each, Rushworth having Andrew Gale and new signing, South Africa international David Miller, caught by Gordon Muchall at slip before he had conceded a run. Onions bowled Phil Jaques and trapped Joe Root lbw while Mitch Claydon got in on the act by dismissing Gary Ballance lbw.
Richard Pyrah, in his first outing since breaking a bone in his hand in the opening Championship match of the season, led the fightback in a 57-run stand in eight overs with wicketkeeper Gerard Brophy. Three fours and a six rushed Pyrah to 22 off 11 balls but when he had reached 32 Liam Plunkett had him caught on the midwicket boundary.
With 22 wanted from three overs at 121 for 6, Yorkshire looked favourites but Borthwick brought a dramatic turnabout by bowling Brophy and Mitchell Starc with consecutive deliveries. Ryan Sidebottom survived an lbw shout off the hat-trick ball but Yorkshire had left themselves with just a little too much to do.
After Durham, put in to bat, had taken 49 off the six power-play overs for the early loss of Herschelle Gibbs, Yorkshire's bowlers did well to restrict the visitors' score to 142 for 6.
Australia paceman Starc claimed two wickets for 21 off his four overs, but Moin Ashraf also impressed with 2 for 28, pinning Durham's latest signing, Johann Myburgh, lbw for ten, and bowling top-scorer, Ben Stokes, for 36 with a low full-toss. Stokes faced 28 balls and struck five boundaries.
Durham's most fruitful part was 41 in five overs for the second wicket between Phil Mustard and Stokes, the latter rapping three fours in four balls off Sidebottom in an over which cost 16. The partnership was ended by Pyrah, Mustard driving his second ball to Starc on the cover boundary to depart for 19 from 14 deliveries with four fours.
An athletic catch by Ashraf at mid-off accounted for Dale Benkenstein for a threatening 25 from 17 balls with two fours and a six and Muchall was unbeaten, also for 25, from 24 balls with two boundaries.