Southern Brave 97 for 3 (Vince 45*) beat Trent Rockets 96 (Mills 3-8, Garton 3-18) by seven wickets

George Garton and Craig Overton with the new ball, Tymal Mills and Chris Jordan at the death. Southern Brave's four-pronged pace attack is the envy of most franchises around the world and blew Trent Rockets' batters away for 96 in a one-sided Hundred eliminator at The Oval. If Jofra Archer had been fit to play ahead of Overton, this would have been over before the floodlights came on.

Brave were thrashed by Rockets in their opening game of the competition, restricted to 126 as Marchant de Lange rattled through them with a five-wicket haul before watching D'Arcy Short and Dawid Malan cruise to unbeaten fifties in the chase. Garton said at the interval that they felt they had "something to prove" after that defeat, and their seven-wicket thrashing with 32 balls to spare was as resounding a win as they could have hoped for.

It was Garton, the whippet-like left-arm seamer, who made the crucial inroads, taking three wickets in his first three sets of five to leave Rockets four down inside the Powerplay. Garton missed a game earlier in the tournament as he gradually recovered from Covid-19, suffering fatigue after contracting the virus on England duty, but looked back at his best, bowling at good pace and finding extra bounce from a length. Rockets never recovered, stumbling against Mills and Jordan at the back end as the seamers shared all 10 wickets between them.

Paul Stirling led the way in the chase, smiting 31 off 19 balls, before James Vince saw them home with a composed, unbeaten innings of 45 off 27 from No. 3, taking down Rashid Khan in the process. de Lange struck twice to take him equal-top of the tournament's wicket-taking charts, but found little support from the rest of the attack.

Brave started the Hundred with consecutive defeats but are now on a six-match winning streak - with a no-result in between - and Mahela Jayawardene has the chance to add a Hundred title to his three IPL trophies with Mumbai Indians. "We got off to a slow start but that feels an age ago now," Garton said. "In the short format, it's about getting on a roll."

Rockets' powercut
Overton was not a guaranteed starter after his release from England's Test squad but after Brave's slow left-armers had been milked by Rockets' left-handed top-order batters in Malan and Short in the group fixture between these teams, Jayawardene opted to bring in a Powerplay specialist to try and strike early.

Overton shared the new ball with George Garton and the pair were taken for three early boundaries by Malan, who retained his position as Alex Hales' opening partner after shuffling up the order from No. 3 in Rockets' final group game against Manchester Originals. But Garton struck twice in his second set to remove both openers, finding extra bounce from a length to take Malan's outside edge and then luring a false shot from Hales with a slower ball angled across him.

"I've got Mala out before in a 50-over game a couple of years ago with the same shot," Garton said afterwards. "I had the plan in my mind. I know he runs it down to third man very well, but that gives you a bit of an opportunity with a bit of extra bounce in the pitch early on to try and nick him off. With Hales, I was just trying to get out of my set of five rather than a wicket. I thought a change of pace at the top of the stumps would be the hardest ball for him to hit for four, and he nicked it."

Overton then struck in his second set, castling Steven Mullaney with a nip-backer as he lined up a filthy hack across the line, to leave Rockets three down inside 20 balls, before Garton added a fourth inside the Powerplay when a length ball stuck in the pitch and Short's leading edge found short midwicket. Analysts and statisticians are still working out the discrepancies between T20 and 100-ball cricket but it is safe to assume the truism that losing several Powerplay wickets is unlikely to help your chances is transferable.

Backloading Brave
There can rarely have been an attack as easy to captain as the one that Southern Brave fielded on Friday night: two new-ball specialists, a wristspinner for the middle phase, and two of the world's best death bowlers. Vince continued to make use of that luxury as he has throughout the tournament, holding back the majority of Mills and Jordan's spells until the back end.

That enouraged Rockets to take risks early on but after the clatter of Powerplay wickets, Samit Patel and Lewis Gregory were forced to rebuild, adding 31 off 32 for the fifth wicket.

But Mills broke the stand with an innocuous delivery, Gregory miscuing a wide full toss to extra cover, and despite a couple of sixes from Tom Moores to keep the crowd interested, Rockets' lower order failed to stem the flow: Jake Lintott took a sharp diving catch at mid-off to remove Patel, Moores swung Jordan to long-on where Overton's self-relay catch was deemed legal, and Mills and Jordan polished off the tail with just 96 on the board.

Stirling work
Rockets needed several early wickets to have any chance of defending such a low score and when Stirling paddle-swept the first ball of the chase for four off Matt Carter, then cracked him over midwicket for a flat six later in the set, they were hugely reliant on Rashid playing a starring role. de Lange bounced out Quinton de Kock for 6, but when Rashid - who had national colours painted on his cheeks and again looked subdued amid the crisis at home - was finally brought on in the fourth set, he started with a waist-high full toss that was hit away for four by Vince, and was then slog-swept over midwicket and paddled through fine leg on a rare off-night.

Stirling's innings was no more than a cameo as he fell to the 40th ball, but by that stage the equation was 28 off 60 with eight wickets in hand. Vince swung Rashid for six and then four and while de Lange ramped up the pace in a hostile 10-ball set, Vince steered Sam Cook for four to seal a clinical win.

Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98