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Surrey flop before big Oval crowd continues nightmarish season

Glamorgan 96 for 2 (Rudolph 34*, Lloyd 31) beat Surrey 93 (Van der Gugten 4-14) by eight wickets
Scorecard

Surrey are the gold standard for English professional cricket as far as Twenty20 is concerned: crowds that fill the Kia Oval are the norm, they are the richest county in the country, the embodiment of off-field success. But the story on the field is not so pretty. They will point to two Finals Days in three years but as they crashed to defeat in their first NatWest Blast home match of the 2016 season, they were abysmal.

Championship cricket has dominated the past six weeks and this match pitted Surrey, bottom of Division One, against Glamorgan, similarly bereft in Division Two - six matches each and not a victory between them. The Blast was an opportunity for release and it was Glamorgan, unfashionable Glamorgan, who gained it by dismissing Surrey for 93 before they waltzed to a predictable eight-wicket victory with 7.4 overs to spare.

The Oval crowd took its punishment quietly. Perhaps we will know that T20 cricket in England matters when they boo on nights like this. Glamorgan, meanwhile, have travelled to south London in T20 four times and won every one, including a county record 240 for 3 a year ago.

Gareth Batty, Surrey's captain, told Sky Sports: "We have not covered ourselves in glory. In T20, a bad day can be really bad. So scratch it off and move forward. I don't think it is a time for getting too carried away."

Fortune also turned against Surrey. Ben Foakes was injured in the pre-match warm-up - struck on the elbow by a stray ball from Stuart Meaker. Then Azhar Mahmood's involvement ended prematurely when the Blast's elder statesman, at 41, propped forward to his second delivery and damaged a calf badly enough to play no further part, unable even to bat with a runner which is still allowed in English domestic cricket. A long lay-off looks likely.

Glamorgan achieved their win by just doing the basics. The surface was a little grabby, and their decision to throttle Surrey with old-fashioned virtues of back-of-a-length consistency worked a treat. Timm van der Gugten, a Netherlands pace bowler via a birthplace in Sydney, emerged with 4 for 14, his dismissal of Steven Davies and Kumar Sangakkara in the space of three balls setting the tone. He found it a bit of inswing, but when he said: "I thought we bowled well as a collective," he summed it up.

Stardom? Not on a night like this. Jason Roy was back at the Kia Oval in T20 colours for the first time since England reached the final of World Twenty20. No longer was he an exciting south London upstart beginning to forge an international career. Now he had recognised quality and debates were taking hold about whether he could even develop into a Test cricketer - and if so why on earth is he batting so low in the order for Surrey in Championship cricket?

But Roy 2016 vintage looked unsettled. Shots were mistimed, the pitch not suiting him, and his early forays were unconvincing. He was only 15 when he tried to manufacture a big shot over the off side against Michael Hogan, skewed it off the bottom of the bat to extra cover and Colin Ingram, back in Glamorgan's side after injury for the first time this season, held a difficult catch pedalling backwards.

Consolidation is not in Roy's nature. Neither is it the T20 way espoused by England which is further encouragement for him to keep playing his shots. But, in the World T20, England had Liam Plunkett or Adil Rashid at No. 11; Surrey, once Foakes had withdrawn, had Mahmood at seven. Perpetual attack needs sound surfaces or batting depth, or preferably both, and Roy did not have the advantage of neither. He will undoubtedly take out his frustration on somebody soon.

Roy's dismissal was all the more damaging because it was the third Surrey wicket to fall in eight balls. Van der Gugten, had taken two wickets in the previous over, having Davies caught off an attempted leg-side flip by a craftily-positioned deep square leg, and then defeating Kumar Sangakkara's advance to drive courtesy of a fast catch above his head by wicketkeeper Chris Cooke.

It was not the sort of night, as delightful as it was to see it, for Zafar Ansari to make a return from a second thumb injury that has disrupted his career: he made a second-ball nought, edging Craig Meschede's overpitched ball to the wicketkeeper. Many in the 15,500 crowd were just coming in; Surrey statisticians must have been toying with walking out, 37 for 4 after the six-over Powerplay already leaving their victory chances strikingly low.

And it got worse. Sam Curran showed pizazz for a while, but on 21 pulled Meschede to midwicket where David Lloyd took a skilful low catch and, although Curran delayed - politely enough - in the hope of a TV umpire adjudication which would have improved his chances of survival, the umpires chose to believe the evidence of their own eyes. Van der Gugten later found a little inswing to complete his foursome, bowling Gary Wilson as he shuffled across his stumps and having James Burke, Foakes' replacement, lbw third ball.

Glamorgan's chase was a non-event. Surrey did not go for broke with attacking fields, and an opening stand of 58 settled the game as Jacques Rudolph stroked it around with quality and Lloyd struck powerfully over the leg side. Ingram announced his return from injury by battering Mathew Pillans' first ball over long-on for six. It was very much Glamorgan's night.

Glamorgan 2nd innings Partnerships

WktRunsPlayers
1st58JA RudolphDL Lloyd
2nd19JA RudolphCA Ingram
3rd19JA RudolphAHT Donald