Worcestershire 295 (Kervezee 77, Whiteley 61, Cotton 4-43, Carter 2-38, Thakor 2-59)
Derbyshire 298-3 (Rutherford 104, Godleman 61, Madsen 69 not, Broom 45 not)
Derbyshire won by seven wickets
A swarm of propitious bees flew over New Road earlier today as Derbyshire were in the field, yet by the end of the day it was the team and their supporters who were buzzing...
Let's be honest, the number of times that we have chased such a total with success is fairly limited, enough so to make it special when it happens. Today's run chase at Worcester was both professional and perfectly paced by a Derbyshire side that has followed the example of Muddy Waters and finally got its mojo working. As weekends go, this was a good one to be a Derbyshire supporter.
The key was a team effort. The four seamers bowled well, with Ben Cotton returning career-best bowling figures in one-day cricket. Andy Carter did well too, Shiv Thakor and Alex Hughes were steady and Matt Critchley got the collaring that was always likely to happen after some very good displays.
Whether Wayne Madsen or Chesney Hughes were fit enough to have bowled a couple of Matt's overs I don't know, but he ended up with the key wicket of Ross Whiteley when the latter could have put Worcestershire out of sight.
How many thought we could chase nearly 300 is a worthwhile question, but after Chesney was run out 'overestimating his powers of acceleration', Hamish Rutherford blazed a superb century from just 76 balls with 7 fours and 7 sixes. He had a couple of lives, but the way he plays that is always likely to be a possibility. Billy Godleman played the common sense role at the other end and when he was out in the 32nd over, we were 163-2 and needing 133 from the last eighteen. There was a time when that was considered more challenging, but you'd fancy that in a T20, with wickets in hand.
Rutherford went after 36 overs, when we needed 102 from 14, but a win never seemed in doubt today. Wayne Madsen was going well by that stage and he, partnered with admirable common sense by Neil Broom, got the required runs with almost two overs to spare and the minimum of fuss.
It was special and full praise is due to the team. It is appropriate to give credit to Hamish Rutherford and Neil Broom, who have endured some stick this summer, but delivered today. It was interesting listening to Jimmy Neesham the other night after his Man of the Match Award. 'I did nothing different from Northampton' he said, 'but it went for me tonight'. Such is the game and if both kick on from here, few of us will remember April and May by the time the end of the summer comes.
As for Alex Hughes, he has played two, won two as skipper and must think this captaincy lark is a piece of cake. There was a reassurance of having Alex and Shiv with their pads on and suddenly the batting looks more robust in this form of the game.
Finally, warm congratulations to John Sadler. Whether new management has made a change to the environment only the players know, but he has two straight and impressive wins under his belt and no one could ask for more. He will know as well as anyone that you can't win them all, but this was a performance to savour. When they are interviewing for the new coach's role, he can cite this as one of the most professional run chases in old Peakfan's memory.
Durham at Derby is next. If they maintain this level of performance, the names don't matter, it's still only eleven against eleven.
Well done lads. We're bee proud tonight...