Liam Plunkett shines as Durham hammer Lancashire
Friends Life t20, Chester-le-Street
Durham 200-6 (20 overs) beat Lancashire 117 (17 overs) by 83 runs
Explosive batting by Dale Benkenstein and incisive bowling from Liam Plunkett helped Durham hammer Lancashire by a massive 83 runs at Chester-le-Street.
Benkenstein struck two sixes in hitting 60 off 34 balls, receiving good support from Plunkett (27 off 10 balls) as the home team ran up a formidable 200-6.
Helped by excellent catching, Plunkett then reduced Lancashire to 48-5, finishing with figures of 5-31.
Farveez Maharoof top scored with 27 as the visitors subsided to 117 all out.
On a night when England paceman Jimmy Anderson was allowed to turn out for Lancashire, but went for 54 off his four overs, off-spinner Gareth Breese took 3-23 for Durham, who leapfrog Lancashire in the North Group table.
Liam Plunkett told BBC Newcastle:
"I didn't bowl as well as I would have liked, but they played shots that went to our men. We came out defending 200 which puts the pressure on them and we got some early wickets.
"We have potential in our dressing room and just need one person to come in and put a performance in and luckily it was me.
"Benky had a great innings as well. When I came in he was hitting the ball sweetly and I was giving him the strike. Then the final over I decided to give it a go. It was a bit of hit and hope but it came off."
Lancashire captain Steven Croft:
"We got outplayed. I think it's our first Twenty20 where we've been outplayed. We've lost three before tonight and all of those went down to the last over.
"It's one of those games where nothing seemed to go right for us. The ball kept missing the fielders and there was a couple of close LBW's we didn't get but we need to stick together and keep that unity in the team.
"We never like losing and the biggest thing to get around was the switchover from four-dayers to one-dayers"
BBC Newcastle's Martin Emmerson:
"A brilliant win for Durham and a great all-round team performance. This is only the third time Durham have reached 200 in the competition and the 83-run margin of victory was a new record for them.
"But, just like after all of their other decent victories over the years, they need to make sure they build on this and not return to the form which they are known for in the shortest format of the game."
BBC Radio Manchester's Liam Bradford:
"Lancashire looked to be suffering from a four-day cricket hangover. It was a night where very little went their way.
"Long road trips may have taken their toll on Lancashire but it was an amazing performance with the bat from Durham that put this game beyond their reach.
"Lancashire will want to regroup as they head back to Nottingham two days after leaving Trent Bridge. It will be a tough fight against the North Group leaders, who are flying in the FL t20 and will be looking to exact revenge for the six-wicket Championship defeat inflicted on them last week by Lancashire."