T20 Blast: Lancashire go top as Worcestershire lose again

Lancashire's Keaton Jennings

Lancashire Lightning went top of the T20 Blast North Group with a crushing eight-wicket win over Derbyshire.

The Falcons only mustered 96-7 from their 20 overs at Aigburth and Keaton Jennings hit an unbeaten 49 as his side cruised home with 16 balls to spare.

Notts Outlaws could reclaim top spot from the Red Rose county if they beat Leicestershire in a later game.

Meanwhile, 2018 winners Worcestershire suffered a fourth loss in five games as Gloucestershire won by 30 runs.

Derbyshire have also not yet won a match and never looked likely to after struggling to 34-4 at the halfway point of their innings against Lancashire.

Anuj Dal fell victim to a comical run-out as the ball ricocheted away off partner Alex Hughes’ boot and he ran two-thirds down the pitch only to be sent back and was beaten by Dane Vilas’ throw.

Hughes made 32 but their total was no threat to 2015 winners Lancashire, who have one of the best opening pairs in the competition in Jennings and Alex Davies.

They added a partnership of 61 to 170 and 63 in previous games before Davies was bowled for 36 by leg-spinner Matt Critchley.

A half-century was there for the taking for Jennings but he was left one run short after Vilas ended the game with a glorious straight six off Leus du Plooy as Lancashire reached 102-2.

Looking bleak for Worcestershire

Worcestershire’s hopes of repeating their Finals Day triumph two years ago are fading fast following another failed attempt to register their first win in this year’s competition.

They remain bottom of Central Group after falling well short in their attempt to chase down Gloucestershire’s total of 181-4.

Opener Chris Dent hammered two sixes and 11 fours in his 87 off 52 balls and James Bracey weighed in with an unbeaten 39 off 20 at the end of the innings.

Matt Taylor nipped out both Rapids openers and their run-chase was undermined by the downfall of Brett D’Oliveira (26) and Jake Libby (33) in successive overs after a stand of 57.

The loss of Ross Whiteley, Dillon Pennington and Ed Barnard in the space of five balls ended their hopes as Ryan Higgins finished with 4-34.

Remaining Friday fixtures (all times BST)

18:00 – Notts Outlaws v Leicestershire Foxes – Trent Bridge

18:30 – Somerset v Birmingham Bears – Taunton

18:30 – Durham v Yorkshire Vikings – Chester-le-Street

Saturday’s fixtures (all times BST)

13:05 – Essex Eagles v Kent Spitfires – Kia Oval

18:35 – Surrey v Middlesex – Kia Oval

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BBC Sport – Cricket

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