Home Cricket Quinton de Kock plays his statement knock as Brave march up the...

Quinton de Kock plays his statement knock as Brave march up the standings

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Expert death bowling from Mills, Jordan restricts Superchargers at Ageas Bowl

Southern Brave 131 for 5 (de Kock 71*) beat Northern Superchargers 128 for 6 (Vilas 35*) by five wickets

Quinton de Kock‘s calculated assault on Northern Superchargers’ spinners led Southern Brave to their third win of the men’s Hundred and propelled them into second place. Chasing a target of 129 on a used hybrid pitch, de Kock started brightly and then led a cruise to victory, finishing unbeaten on 71 as Brave won by five wickets.
Their bowlers had set up the win, with Tymal Mills and Chris Jordan impressing at the death and Jake Lintott and Danny Briggs both making important breakthroughs in the middle phase as Brave leant heavily on their spin attack.
Superchargers never got going with the bat, though briefly threatened to defend their total with Adil Rashid and Adam Lyth both taking two wickets. They suffered a brief stutter in the middle of the innings, losing three for six runs, but with de Kock somewhere near his best, they were never in any trouble.

De Kock proves quality
De Kock came into the Hundred as one of the last world-class recruits standing, among only a handful of men’s overseas players not to have played in the T20 Blast at some stage of his career. He had teed off at the top of the order without pressing on, hitting 51 runs from 25 balls before this innings, while being dismissed three times in the process, so his 71 not out felt like a statement innings as he took down Mujeeb Ur Rahman.

With a low total to defend, David Willey was forced to play his trump card early by bringing Mujeeb into the attack to bowl the third set of five balls, but de Kock opted to attack with the field up. He reverse-swept the first two balls he faced from Mujeeb for four, putting on 36 in 21 balls for the first wicket alongside Paul Stirling to break the back of the chase early on.
De Kock benefited from two misfields as Superchargers’ boundary-riders struggled with a greasy outfield and a wet ball, but his ability to rotate the strike was particularly impressive: he hit 27 runs off the 12 balls he faced from Mujeeb in all, scoring from all 12 of them. He also milked Adil Rashid – who became the tournament’s leading wicket-taker, bowling James Vince with a wicked googly and having Alex Davies stumped off a legbreak – and despite Brave’s late wobble, victory was never in doubt with him at the crease. He was, in Vince’s words, “a class apart”.

Southern spin squeeze
Southern Brave were without arguably their best spinner in Liam Dawson, who broke a finger when Phil Salt thumped a ball back at him during Thursday’s washout in Manchester, but still bowled 50 balls of spin, exploiting home conditions – long boundaries and a used hybrid pitch – to their advantage.



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