Davies downs Unicorns with ton
Surrey 273 for 4 beat Unicorns 207 for 8 by 66 runs
Steven Davies kept alive Surrey's hopes of clinching a semi-final place in the Clydesdale Bank 40 with a superb 101 off 85 balls as the Lions overcame the Unicorns by 66 runs at Wormsley. Davies, who shared in three-figure stands with Rory Hamilton-Brown and Stewart Walters, marked his 100th one-day appearance with his fifth century in List A cricket, and his first for Surrey, as the visitors posted 273 for 4. In reply, the Unicorns could only muster 207 for 8 as Steven Cheetham picked up career best figures of 4 for 32.
Hamilton-Brown brought the 50 up for the Lions in the seventh over when he drove Neil Saker past mid-on for four. Seven overs later, the Surrey skipper reached his own half-century off 45 balls, though not before he had lifted Saker over the rope at long-on for six. The fourth 100-plus partnership between Hamilton-Brown and Davies in this season's CB40 arrived in the 14th over. But, moments later, Hamilton-Brown departed for 52 when he lofted Jahed Ahmed to mid-off.
Davies, who pulled and on drove with authority, offered just one chance, on 67, when he was dropped by Josh Knappett off the bowling of Jackson Thompson. Two overs later, Walters went to his second successive half-century in the CB40, off 64 balls, by despatching Thompson's offspin over wide mid-on for his fourth boundary.
Glenn Querl, who was the pick of the Unicorns' attack, then pegged Surrey back, bowling Davies and Jason Roy in successive overs with almost identical full-length deliveries. With Matthew Spriegel falling to a brilliant catch at long-off off the bowling of Jonathan Miles in the 38th over, the Lions had lost three wickets in five overs for 19 runs. But Walters finished with an unbeaten 78 off 85 balls to give the visitors a daunting total.
Jackson Thompson briefly had Surrey worried when he struck three off-side boundaries in the first over of the Unicorns' reply. But, three overs later, Steven Cheetham found a way through Thompson's defences. With Chris Murtagh slicing to backward point in the 12th over, the 22-year-old had first-spell figures of 2 for 23.
Any hopes the Unicorns had of pulling off a surprise were scuppered four overs later when Knappett, sweeping, fell leg before to Chris Schofield and Keith Parsons was run out at the bowler's end, after working the former England legspinner to Jade Dernbach at short fine leg.
After Sean Park fell to a catch behind off Gareth Batty, Mike O'Shea and Atiq Chishti added 66 in 13 overs for the sixth wicket. Atiq hit Schofield over long-on for six and then down the ground for four to bring the hundred up for the Unicorns in the 22nd over. But he was caught behind immediately upon Cheetham's return to the attack, though not before O'Shea had posted a 61-ball half-century.
Two overs later, Cheetham, who is on loan from Lancashire until the end of the season, picked up a fourth scalp when O'Shea holed out to deep square leg for 65.