Bancroft’s century helps guide Durham to a six wicket win in the Royal London Cup
Cameron Bancroft scored his second unbeaten century on the bounce to guide Durham to a comfortable six-wicket win over Leicestershire Foxes in their Royal London One-Cup clash at Emirates Riverside.
Bancroft was imperious once again in the middle, matching the brilliance of previous knock against Northamptonshire on Wednesday. The Aussie was struck on the head twice, but was untroubled as he composed another fine innings to make it two victories out of two for the north-east outfit.
Tom Taylor and Dieter Klein had dragged Leicestershire out of trouble after they were reduced to 112-7 earlier in the contest. However, the home side were able to chase down their eventual target of 234 with ease courtesy of their skipper's performance.
Brydon Carse made Durham's breakthrough in the second over of the day when Harry Dearden edged the ball on his own stumps. The paceman then trapped Paul Horton lbw for 11 before continuing his tearing run through the Foxes top order by bowling Colin Ackermann, leaving the visitors 41-3.
Mark Cosgrove and Lewis Hill responded with a solid partnership. The two players stemmed the tide before Cosgrove was dismissed by a brilliant catch by Ben Raine for 22 off the bowling of Matthew Potts. Hill soon followed when he tamely drove a Liam Trevaskis delivery straight to Raine at short cover.
Matt Salisbury came back into the attack to remove Arron Lilley before Trevaskis notched his second wicket as Potts produced a fantastic diving backwards effort to catch Harry Swindells for 15. The visitors were in huge trouble at 112-7, but Taylor and Klein rose to the challenge to add vital runs for the eighth wicket.
They were able to swing momentum back in the way of the Foxes, reaching their fifty partnership from 74 deliveries. Taylor was outstanding for his team, digging the visitors out of trouble. He made his maiden List A half-century from 58 balls, including five boundaries.
It took something special to end his innings and Raine produced a blinding catch at point to hand Potts his second wicket, breaking the partnership of 81. Klein continued his fine knock, notching a career-best 46 before he was bowled off the final ball of the innings by Potts, guiding the Foxes to a total of 233 from their 50 overs.
Durham's chase began poorly, losing Graham Clark and Alex Lees early for the second game in the row. Klein continued his impressive performance claiming both wickets to put the hosts on the back foot. Steel and Bancroft responded as they did in the home side's opener against Northamptonshire, putting on fifty for the fourth wicket for the second game in a row.
Steel was making good progress in the middle on 35, but then went for one big strike too many, mistiming a pull stroke off Gavin Griffiths, allowing Paul Horton to claim a routine catch. Bancroft was not deterred by the loss of his partner at the other end, pacing his knock to perfection. He passed fifty from 58 deliveries and again formed another strong stand with Michael Richardson.
The duo put on a hundred for the fourth wicket for the second game on the bounce before Richardson fell for 39. Bancroft upped the ante to power his way to three figures, racing through the nineties within seven balls to notch his century with a boundary. The Aussie ensured that he was there at the end with a fifty partnership with Jack Burnham to see Durham to a comfortable victory.