Kervezee ton in vain as Lancashire win
Lancashire 260 for 6 beat Worcestershire 258 for 6 by four wickets
A maiden half-century for Luke Procter carried Lancashire Lightning to an entertaining four-wicket Clydesdale Bank 40 win over Worcestershire Royals at Liverpool. Procter, the 22-year-old coming to the end of his first season on the club's professional staff, shared a crucial sixth-wicket partnership of 62 inside 11 overs with debutant Jordan Clark as they chased down 259.
He and Stephen Parry, who hit the winning runs with five balls to spare, finished the job off. Left-hander Procter top scored with 64 not out off 59 balls, including six fours and a six, to go alongside Steven Croft's 60 off 35 balls.
The battle for fourth place in Group A looked to be going Worcestershire's way after Alexei Kervezee's county best 111 off 101 balls had helped post a competitive 258 for 6 against a home side including only four first team regulars.
Left arm spinner Gary Keedy claimed season's best 4 for 41 from his eight overs to keep the hosts in the game at the halfway stage. But, having been 172 for 3 after 30 overs with Kervezee at the crease, the Royals could feasibly have posted 20 or so more than they did. Kervezee, the 20-year-old right hander who hit 11 fours, was at his strongest making room to hit through and over the cover region.
Nobody else managed to better Daryl Mitchell's boundary-less 40 off 54 balls although Vikram Solanki and James Cameron made valuable contributions in the twenties. Kervezee and Mitchell shared 96 for the fourth wicket inside 29 overs.
Keedy had Solanki stumped, Shakib Al Hasan caught at mid-off, he bowled Mitchell and had Kervezee caught at long-off. Steven Cheetham, recalled from a loan spell at Surrey to play, and Croft were the other wicket takers for Lancashire.
Imran Arif removed Paul Horton in the second over of the Lightning chase but Croft and Karl Brown (41) shared 89 in 11 overs for the second wicket. Croft hit 10 fours and a pulled six. But he was one of three quick wickets to fall to take the score from 101 for 1 in the 13th over to 120 for 4 in the 18th.
He holed out to Jack Shantry off the left arm spin of Bangladeshi Shakib, who also trapped Mark Chilton lbw. Brown then reverse swept Moeen Ali's offspin to Shantry at short third man.
Gareth Cross (28) and Procter then steadied the Lancashire ship somewhat with a 49-run partnership in eight overs for the fifth wicket before the former was caught in the deep off Moeen trying to hit his third six. Procter and Clark (32) then united before the former was key in clinching two points that were in the balance with 19 needed off two overs.
A huge six from Procter over long on off the bowling of Shantry was a telling blow. Moeen and Shakib finished with 2 for 29 and 2 for 40 from eight overs respectively.