Leicestershire fold after Lineker ton
Unicorns 259 for 5 (Lineker 132) beat Leicestershire 217 (Cobb 53, Park 4-39) by 42 runs
Matt Lineker hit his second century in six days as Unicorns ended their Yorkshire Bank 40 season on a high with a 42-run victory against Leicestershire at Grace Road.
The 28-year-old former Derbyshire batsman scored 132 off 106 balls to steer Unicorns to 259 for 5 after they had been put into bat. It followed the 107 he made against Yorkshire last Tuesday.
And then a feeble batting performance by the Foxes saw them bowled out for 217 in 39 overs, with seamer Garry Park claiming career best one-day figures of 4 for 39, giving Unicorns the only win of the campaign in their final game. The shock defeat ended Leicestershire's slim hopes of reaching the semi-finals.
It was a lacklustre effort from the home side with both bat and ball, and some loose bowling allowed Lineker and Tom Lancefield to post an opening partnership of 114 in 23 overs. Lineker dominated the stand with some bold attacking shots, reaching 50 off 44 balls with six fours plus a massive six off Michael Thornely. The century partnership was brought up with a cheeky reverse sweep by Lancefield.
But having contributed 38 to the stand Lancefield was bowled by a quicker ball from Josh Cobb. Lineker however, continued to punish Leicestershire's wayward attack and Park also chipped in with a six off Alex Wyatt. Another boundary by Lineker - his 14th - took him to his century off 86 balls.
Park, who shared a stand of 81 in 10 overs with Lineker was bowled by Anthony Ireland for 31 and Bharat Tripathi was then beaten by a yorker from Shiv Thakor for 10. When Lineker finally holed out to long leg off Thornely he had hit 17 fours and two sixes. Unicorns scored 91 off the last 10 overs helped by 39 runs coming off two oves from Ireland and Thakor.
Leicestershire made a good start to the chase with Cobb hitting a run-a-ball half century in an opening stand of 89 with Niall O'Brien. But when the two of them were out in the space of five overs the innings disintegrated.
Only Ned Eckersley and Tom Wells offered any resistance, with Park picking up the wickets of Eckersley, Matt Boyce, Ireland and James Sykes to complete a memorable victory for Unicorns.