Essex 204 for 4 beat Gloucestershire 82 by 122 runs
Scott Styris was star of the show as Essex crushed Gloucestershire by 122 runs in their Friends Life t20 clash at Chelmsford.
He struck an unbeaten 39 from just 17 deliveries to lead his side to a formidable total of 204 for 4. Then he underlined his all-round qualities by picking up 3 for 12 as the visitors were bowled out for a miserable 82 in 13.3 overs.
Styris and Ryan ten Doeschate put together an unbroken partnership of 71 in five overs at the end of the Essex innings. Styris struck four successive sixes off left-arm seamer David Payne, while ten Doeschate joined in the fun with 32 from 16 balls as he helped himself to four fours and a six.
Their efforts followed a partnership of 85 for the fifth wicket in nine overs between Ravi Bopara and Owais Shah. Bopara fell one short of a half-century, his runs arriving from 36 deliveries, while Shah's 40 came from 30 balls before both were dismissed in the same over by left-arm spinner Ed Young.
It all proved too much for Gloucestershire. They seemed to be still shellshocked by the late onslaught from Styris and ten Doeschate when they embarked upon their reply. Their first three batsmen failed to trouble the scores, New Zealander Tim Southee removing Alex Gidman and Chris Taylor with successive balls in his first over.
Then Graham Napier bowled Hamish Marshall to leave the visitors 4 for 3, all of those runs coming in extras. From that moment onwards, the best the visitors could hope for was some semblance of respectability.
But even that was to prove beyond them as the Essex bowlers, backed up by some fine fielding, turned the screw. Two more wickets fell before the 50 was raised, in the ninth over.
Kane Williamson hauled out on the midwicket boundary to Bopara to provide Chris Wright with success before left-arm spinner Tim Phillips bowled Kevin O'Brien. Phillips then breached the defence of Will Gidman immediately afterwards, and the innings went from bad to worse as Essex went on their destructive course.
Styris was to pick up two wickets in an over, and fittingly, it was he who brought the match to an end when he had Richard Coughtrie caught by Matt Walker. It left Gloucestershire suffering their second heavy defeat in as many days, following on from their eight-wicket thrashing at the hands of Surrey.
For Essex, it was their first victory of the campaign, after their defeat 24 hours earlier against Sussex.