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Durham put through Mill by Yorkshire batsman
South Africa’s David Miller returned to haunt his old county and help Yorkshire take a significant step towards the quarter-finals of the Friends Life t20 at the hands of Durham at the Riverside tonight.
Left-handed Miller, 23, crashed a breathtaking 35-ball 74 not out as the Tykes powered towards a commanding 171-6, which also included 30 for Adam Lyth and 41 from Joe Root.
The former Durham player walloped five fours and six sixes, four of which came off England leg-spinner Scott Borthwick. He even hit one six onto the pavilion roof over mid-wicket off Borthwick.
Miller would have then had his heart in his mouth watching compatriot Herschelle Gibbs, himself an ex-Yorkshire player, tee off to put the hosts on course for victory with 76 off 47 balls.
But when he fell to Moin Ashraf, leaving the score at 118-4 after 13 overs, the visitors were able to put the squeeze on and hold their nerve.
Brilliant Ryan Sidebottom claimed a career best 4-25 as Durham were bowled out for 159, thus clinching a 12-run success.
Yorkshire go joint top of the North Division with Nottinghamshire after their third win in four matches. The two teams play each other at Scarborough on Sunday.
It was Miller’s first half-century for Yorkshire at the fourth attempt. And, ironically, his only score above 50 in a similar spell for Durham last year came against them at Scarborough.
He came to the crease with the score at 64-2 in the eighth over after Phil Jaques and Lyth, who also hit two sixes over mid-wicket, had fallen.
He and Gary Ballance shared 45 in 5.4 overs for the fifth wicket and then an unbroken 34 in just 13 balls for the sixth with stand-in captain Azeem Rafiq. Thirty four runs came off the last two overs, including 19 off the last.
Gibbs helped to take his side to 108-2 after ten overs of their chase. But things started to go wrong from there. Only ten runs came from the next three overs, which included him holing out to Rafiq at extra cover.
Sidebottom had earlier got rid of Phil Mustard, and he returned in gloomy conditions to get Gareth Breese caught by Rafiq and Borthwick trapped lbw.
He also bowled Liam Plunkett in the penultimate over to leave Durham needing 16 off the last, in which Mitchell Starc (3-33) took two wickets.