Andrew's onslaught gives Worcestershire victory
Worcestershire 146 for 7 beat Leicestershire 142 for 8 by three wickets
Gareth Andrew smashed 27 off 11 balls to give Worcestershire Royals their first away win in the Friends Provident t20 and send Leicestershire Foxes crashing to their sixth consecutive home defeat at Grace Road.
Chasing a victory target of 143, the Royals looked to have blown their chances when they lost quick wickets and slipped to 112 for 7 with three overs to go. But Andrew struck four boundaries plus a huge six off Leicestershire captain Matthew Hoggard to turn things round and the Royals won by three wickets with six balls to spare.
Victory lifted them off the bottom of the North group table and dealt a major blow to the Foxes' hopes of reaching the quarter-finals. Worcestershire had made a solid start to their chase with opener Phil Jaques and Sanath Jayasuriya putting on 41 in six overs with little trouble.
Jayasuriya struck the first six of the match with a fine shot off Hoggard but Jaques holed out to deep midwicket having hit five boundaries in his 27-ball innings. But the Royals' reply began to stutter as spinners Brad Hodge and Claude Henderson suddenly curtailed the run rate.
Henderson claimed the wicket of Jayasuriya and Hodge put the Foxes in control with a three-wicket spell in his four overs that cost 26 runs -14 of them coming off his final six deliveries. But Andrew strode in to snatch the game from the home side in dramatic fashion to give the Royals a well deserved success.
Top scorer for the Foxes was Wayne White with 26 off 22 balls and but for 21 extras the home side's total would have been considerably lower. Hodge and Jacques du Toit put on 48 in the first six overs but the departure of Hodge triggered a collapse that saw five wickets tumble for 32 runs in five overs.
Du Toit was dismissed with a brilliant piece of work on the square leg boundary by Alexei Kervezee who knocked the ball up to prevent a six and then skilfully flicked it into the hands of Jaques to complete the catch. Offspinner Moeen Ali picked up the wickets of James Benning, Josh Cobb and White to finish with three for 19 and the Foxes' total of 142 for 8 always looked short of being a competitive target.
During the game Leicestershire's members were asked to sign a petition for a special general meeting following the shock resignation last week of chief executive David Smith.