I didn’t feel pressure – Buttler


Published: Saturday 6th June 2015 by The News Editor

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England wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler was the hero for Lancashire Lightning as the Red Rose edged past fierce rivals Yorkshire Vikings in the pick of Friday’s NatWest T20 Blast action.

Buttler smashed 71 not out off just 35 balls to stun the Headingley crowd, with his single off the final delivery of the Roses match earning Lancashire a four-wicket victory.

The visitors looked set for defeat in pursuit of 186 when they were left needing 45 from the last three overs, but Buttler insisted he was always confident he would see his side home.

“Seventeen off the last… as soon as I hit the first ball of that over, I knew we were going to win,” he said.

“I didn’t feel any pressure – I was immersed in the game. All the pressure is on the bowler, playing in front of their home crowd – 16,000 people are expecting them to win.

“If I was there at there at the end, I knew we were going to win.”

Buttler’s heroics meant disappointment for England team-mates Joe Root and Gary Ballance, who had earlier struck 55 and 31 respectively in Yorkshire’s 185 for eight.

Moeen Ali was also among the runs in Worcestershire Rapids’ 14-run win against Northants Steelbacks.

The England all-rounder cleared the ropes five times on his way to 90 off only 50 deliveries as the Rapids posted a daunting total of 211 for three.

Josh Cobb’s 80 was in vain as Northants fell short of their target in a reply which saw Daryl Mitchell take the unusual step of using wicketkeeper Ben Cox as an outfielder.

Worcestershire director of cricket Steven Rhodes said: “In a game when you’re trying to stop the opposition scoring, it’s a legitimate tactic.”

Alex Hales posted a half-century but it was not enough for Notts Outlaws against Leicestershire Foxes, who were indebted to debutant Umar Akmal’s unbeaten 76 in their six-wicket success.

There was drama elsewhere in the North Group as Usman Arshad held his nerve to steer leaders Durham Jets to a five-run triumph over Derbyshire Falcons.

In the South Group, Glamorgan claimed their first home win of the season by a margin of only four runs in a nail-biter against Middlesex.

Dawid Malan appeared set to take Middlesex to victory but his departure for 70 gave Glamorgan a lift before fine death bowling from Michael Hogan and Graham Wagg secured the points for the Welsh county.

Chris Gayle was at it again for Somerset, with the West Indies opener taking his run tally to 328 in just three matches with 85 in his side’s eight-wicket win against Hampshire.

Kent Spitfires remain top of the group despite their nine-wicket defeat by Gloucestershire, while Tom Westley and Ravi Bopara hit fifties in Essex Eagles’ six-wicket triumph over Surrey.

Published: Saturday 6th June 2015 by The News Editor

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