Steven Mullaney praises 'phenomenal' Matt Critchley as North beat South

Matt Critchley
Derbyshire's Matt Critchley struck his first fifty in 16 List A innings
North v South, Kensington Oval
North 335-8 (50 overs): D'Oliveira 79, Clarke 71, Critchley 64; Walter 3-67
South 289 (44.3 overs): Gubbins 109, Evans 64, Pope 42; Parkinson 3-47
North won by 46 runs

Captain Steven Mullaney praised Derbyshire's Matt Critchley after his rapid innings helped North beat the South and tie the series at 1-1.

Critchley, 21, struck four sixes in his knock of 64 off just 37 balls to propel the North to 335-8 in Barbados.

Nick Gubbins made a second successive century in reply and Laurie Evans hit 64, but the South were all out for 289.

"Critchley was phenomenal at the end to strike the ball the way he did," Mullaney told BBC Radio 5 live.

"That's why he's batting where he is because we know we need someone to clear the ropes at the end. We would've liked him to take it a little bit deeper, but he played a magnificent innings."

Worcestershire pair Joe Clarke (71 off 58 balls) and Brett D'Oliveira (79 off 83) impressed in front of director of England cricket Andrew Strauss and selectors Angus Fraser and Mick Newell at the Kensington Oval in Bridgetown.

But it was Critchley's fireworks which pushed on the score to seal the North's first win over the South at the fifth attempt.

"It's a bit of a relief," Mullaney added. "I thought we were fantastic without being perfect. I was confident with 336 but they've got some good players."

The three-match series concludes on Friday at the Three Ws Oval in Bridgetown.

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