Wes Durston's hundred in vain as Alex Hales stars
Nottinghamshire 193 for 5 beat Derbyshire 192 for 6 by five wickets
Half-centuries from Alex Hales and Samit Patel eclipsed a brilliant hundred from Wes Durston as the Nottinghamshire romped past Derbyshire by five wickets with three overs to spare. Durston hit 111 off 59 balls, with seven sixes and 11 fours for the first century of this season's Friends Provident t20, as the Trent Bridge visitors amassed an intimidating 192 for six.
But Hales smashed 69 from just 25 balls - including three sixes and 11 fours - in partnership with Ali Brown as Nottinghamshire raced to 99 off the first seven overs of their reply before both batsmen fell in consecutive overs. Patel ensured there was no chance of the momentum being lost with a classy innings containing seven fours and three more sixes and was there at the close to complete the victory, finishing on 62 not out.
Former Somerset batsman Durston had earned himself a short-term contract with Derbyshire after a terrific hundred for the Unicorns against Sussex in the Clydesdale Bank 40 earlier in the season and the 29-year-old demonstrated all his talents in commendable style.
In partnership with South African Loots Bosman, who made 39, Durston got the visitors off to a great start before Bosman was bowled by Steven Mullaney in the eighth over to break the partnership. While the home bowlers kept a tight rein on the other Derbyshire batsmen, Durston continued to find the boundary at will, including a reverse-swept six off Patel before being run out in the 18th over.
Despite being asked to chase down their sixth highest total in Twenty20, Notts openers Hales and Brown blitzed the powerplay overs with a stunning display of hitting. Hales, 21, dominated the strike and brought up his fifty with a pulled six off Garry Park in the fifth over off his 16th delivery - the fifth fastest Twenty20 half-century ever - to set the platform for the win.
He was eventually bowled by Robin Peterson but Patel showed plenty of class to hit the Derbyshire spinners repeatedly into the gaps over cover, finishing proceedings by taking 15 off the third over from seamer Steffan Jones - who conceded 53 in three overs.