Middlesex v Nottinghamshire, Royal London Cup, Group B, Lord's August 6, 2015

Wessels' one-day best secures Notts win

ECB/PA

Nottinghamshire 295 for 9 (Wessels 132, Mullaney 51, Rayner 4-35) beat Middlesex 246 (Robson 88, Tahir 3-38) by 49 runs
Scorecard

Riki Wessels scored his second List A hundred and first for Nottinghamshire © Getty Images

The best one-day score of Riki Wessels' career helped Notts Outlaws maintain their unbeaten start to the Royal London Cup and secure their place in the knockout stages.

Wessels scored 132 as the Outlaws posted 295 for 9 to beat Middlesex by 49 runs at Lord's, with 12 balls to spare.

The 29-year old scored his runs from 118 deliveries and hit 12 fours and seven sixes as he registered just his second century in the format and first since 2008.

Steven Mullaney and Luke Fletcher added some lustre to the Outlaws' innings, sharing an eighth-wicket stand of 63 in just 8.1 overs before both fell in the final over of the innings.

Ollie Rayner returned his career-best figures of 4 for 35 and Gurjit Sandhu ended with 3 for 64.

Sam Robson scored 88 in Middlesex's response but when he fell in the 38th over the home side's chances disappeared with him as the Outlaws' spinners took control. Imran Tahir ended with 3 for 38 and Samit Patel took 3 for 45.

A combination of an uncertain weather forecast and a tube strike meant that very few spectators were in the ground to see the Outlaws' openers walk to the middle after James Franklin had inserted his former county.

Alex Hales was clearly attracted to the shorter boundary on the Tavern side and deposited Sandhu several rows back before then drilling a return to the same bowler to depart for just 11.

Michael Lumb, playing his first match in this season's competition only made a single, before edging Toby Roland-Jones behind as the powerplay produced a meagre return of 28 for 2.

James Taylor, like Hales, had made a century in this same fixture 12 months ago but perished for just 8, shuffling in front to be given lbw against Roland-Jones.

Brendan Taylor, fresh from a pair of ducks against Essex and Lancashire, over the last four days, scored 19 before sweeping Rayner's first delivery to short fine leg.

Wessels was already starting to pepper the short side, hitting two sixes in his fifty but then lost Samit Patel who chipped back to Rayner for 9.

On 87, the opener had his only moment of concern as Dawid Malan got a hand to a leg-side blow but had to settle for pawing the ball back into play, rather than conceding the six runs it would have been had he continued to topple over the rope.

Wessels reached three figures for the first time in a Notts shirt, from 100 balls, with his fifth six, a switch hit off Rayner. Two more sixes, from consecutive Roland-Jones' deliveries, took him to 132, whereupon he presented a catch in the deep, off Rayner.

Brett Hutton made just 9 but solid contributions from Luke Fletcher, who blasted 39 from 29 balls, including two sixes, plus 51 from Mullaney, saw the Outlaws to within five runs of 300.

Mddlesex's response was given the perfect start with a solid opening stand of 71 before Tahir had Malan caught at backward point by Hales for 33.

Robson, playing just his 13th List A match, passed 50 from 70 balls with five fours and received good support from Nick Gubbins in a second-wicket partnership worth 81.

The 29th over saw Notts make a double strike. Hutton sent back Gubbins for 45, with Taylor gratefully clinging on at midwicket and then former Outlaw, Franklin, was run out for nought by a direct hit from Lumb.

Robson's top score in this format came to an end with an ill-advised blow down the ground in Tahir's comeback over and the tail folded meekly as Patel picked up the final three wickets to seal the win.

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