Gloucester sneak home in the rain
Gloucestershire went joint-top of the Clydesdale Bank 40 Group B when they narrowly defeated Derbyshire in a rain-affected match under the County Ground floodlights. They squeezed home by one run on the Duckworth-Lewis method after they were set a revised target of 175 in 31 overs.
They had been chasing Derbyshire's 225 for 8, which included 65 from 56 balls from Wayne Madsen, and the contest was in the balance when the umpires took the players off the field for the last time with the visitors 152 for 5, one ahead of the par score.
Until Madsen broke free, Derbyshire had found it difficult to get the ball away on a sluggish surface after Anthony Ireland had removed Chesney Hughes and Robin Peterson with lifting balls in the first eight overs. Chris Rogers and Wes Durston began the rebuilding process by adding 64 in 15 overs but their progress stalled when they both fell to Richard Dawson in the space of four balls.
Durston holed out to deep square leg and Rogers, who faced 46 balls before hitting a boundary, was lbw for 40 trying to switch-hit. At 100 for 4 in the 23rd over, Derbyshire were precariously perched but Madsen found the right mix of invention and orthodoxy to make sure his team set a testing target. Greg Smith shared a stand of 67 in 11 overs and, after Steffan Jones had driven Steve Kirby back over his head for six, Garry Park and Madsen added 38 in four overs.
Gloucestershire made a steady start and although Will Porterfield hit the first three balls from Smith for four, the scoring rate dipped when the spinners came on. Peterson and Jake Needham built up pressure that paid off when Porterfield drove Peterson to long on and was well caught low down by Tim Groenewald for 38 from 49 balls.
Alex Gidman found it increasingly hard to time the ball and, after taking 70 balls to score 45, he chipped Needham to midwicket before rain held up play with the visitors 103 for 2 from 22 overs. When the match resumed, the Gladiators were left to score 72 from nine overs and Franklin and Hamish Marshall kept up with the required rate before Jones deceived Marshall with a slower ball that he lobbed to square leg.
The Falcons were right back in it when Franklin drove Groenewald to cover in the next over and although Chris Dent drove Smith for four, he drilled Park to long off with 25 needed off 16 balls. It was now raining heavily and after Chris Taylor drove the next ball to deep cover for two, umpires Richard Kettleborough and Trevor Jesty decided the rain was too heavy for play to continue with the Gladiators one in front of the Duckworth-Lewis par score of 151.