New Zealand opener Finn Allen made his third fifty in 11 Vitality Blast innings this season as Lancashire Lighting took the points against Northamptonshire Steelbacks at Emirates Old Trafford.
Allen made 66 off 37 balls with seven fours and three sixes as his side overhauled the Steelbacks’ moderate total of 142 for eight with 26 balls to spare.
Northamptonshire Steelbacks’ innings got off to a poor start when they lost their openers Ben Curran and Ricardo Vasconcelos to catches in the deep in the first 11 balls of their innings. Steven Croft and Tom Hartley were the successful bowlers and they were joined by Liam Hurt in the fifth over when Josh Cobb clipped him to Danny Lamb at short fine leg and departed for 20.
Poorly placed on 42 for three after their Powerplay, the Steelbacks’ reconstruction of their innings was left in the hands of Rob Keogh and Mohammad Nabi and this pair added 60 in nearly nine overs before Nabi was adjudged leg before wicket for 27 when attempting a pull off Lamb.
Marking the 10 year anniversary of his Steelbacks T20 debut, Keogh went on to make a gutsy 56, despite appearing to suffer a leg injury, but he was one of four wickets to fall in the final four overs as the Steelbacks innings ran out of steam.
Despite just a single from Nabi’s opening over, Lancashire’s reply got off to a brisk start with the fifty coming up in 33 balls and both Allen and Jennings scoring freely. The pair had set a new first-wicket record for Lancashire against Northamptonshire before Allen chipped Nabi to Josh Cobb at midwicket.
It was one of only two wickets claimed by the Steelbacks, the second a just reward for young left arm wrist spinner Freddie Heldreich who impressed again with 1 for 20 from his four overs.