A SPECIAL innings of 69 not out off 43 balls from Andrew Hodd helped Yorkshire stun Leicestershire when all looked lost at Grace Road to put one foot in the quarter-finals of the Royal London one-day Cup.
After Leicester could only post 236-8 from their 50 overs after being inserted, rain early in Yorkshire’s chase with them at 27-2 after 11 overs threatened to the ruin the contest and give the hosts a Duckworth Lewis win.
After more than an hour’s delay, however, play was able to resume with the target adjusted to 191 in 32 overs, meaning the Vikings needed a stiff 164 in 21 on a sticky pitch.
Wickets continued to tumble to leave Yorkshire in a hole at 91-6 in the 21st over and the target 100 off 70 balls.
Enter Hodd, the experienced wicketkeeper batsman who is only playing first-team cricket at present because Jonny Bairstow is on Lions duty.
He shared 62 in 41 balls with Bresnan (24) for the seventh wicket to turn the game before he continued on when his partner had departed.
Although it was Rich Pyrah who hit a big six over mid-wicket to seal a three-wicket win with three balls to spare, former Sussex man Hodd was the hero with only his second fifty in List A cricket, including ten fours and a huge six over mid-wicket himself in the penultimate over.
A pivotal moment in the chase came at the start of the 30th when, with Yorkshire needing 30 off three with three wickets in hand, nine runs came off effectively one ball from Shiv Thakor, who conceded five wides and a boundary.
Hodd then hit his six over mid-wicket off Ben Raine in the next. “I felt a bit sorry for him because it's not often I hit sixes. It was just in the slot. It was one of those fluke things,” quipped Hodd.
Leaders Yorkshire have now won four of their five Group 'A' fixtures and probably only need one more win out of their last three matches to seal a last-eight berth.
"It would be one of them, definitely,” continued Hodd when asked whether this was his best moment since joining Yorkshire in the latter stages of the 2012 season.
“The situation we were in, it's just nice to contribute to a win really. We've got such a strong team, so I usually just bring up the rear and get a not out at the end. Here, it was nice to have a knock that got us over the line.”
Jack Brooks, Adil Rashid and Pyrah all struck twice apiece in the Leicester innings, with Brooks the pick of the bowlers with 2-26 from ten overs. Matt Boyce hit 74 not out to get Leicester above 230.
Sixteen-year-old seamer Matthew Fisher even had 39-year-old former New Zealand international all-rounder Scott Styris caught behind.
“We want a home quarter-final, that's the main goal. If we can take this form into Scarborough, we're halfway there,” added Hodd, whose side need to finish in the top two in the group to achieve that goal.
Yorkshire are back in action against Essex Eagles at Scarborough on Monday, the start of Festival week.
Royal London One-day Cup Group 'A'
Leicestershire v Yorkshire
at Grace Road
(Yorkshire won toss)
A J Robson b Brooks 12
N J O'Brien c Williamson b A U Rashid 34
G P Smith b Brooks 4
M A G Boyce not out 74
D J Redfern st Hodd b A U Rashid 15
S J Thakor b Pyrah 0
S B Styris c Hodd b Fisher 19
T J Wells c Brooks b Pyrah 24
B A Raine c Hodd b Bresnan 43
A J Ireland not out 0
Extras (b1 lb4 w6) 11
Total 8 wkts (50 overs) 236
Fall: 1-24 2-34 3-68 4-90 5-92 6-118 7-172 8-234.
Bowling: Bresnan 10-1-42-1, Brooks 10-1-26-2, Fisher 7-0-49-1, Lyth 1-0-8-0, Pyrah 9-0-43-2, A U Rashid 10-0-50-2, Leaning 3-0-13-0.
A Lyth c Styris b Ireland 13
A Z Lees c N J O'Brien b Shreck 0
K S Williamson c Shreck b Raine 20
A W Gale b Thakor 10
J A Leaning c Wells b Styris 14
A U Rashid c N J O'Brien b Styris 18
A J Hodd not out 69
T T Bresnan c Wells b Shreck 24
R M Pyrah not out 10
Extras (lb4 w11) 15
Total 7 wkts (31.3 overs) 193
Fall: 1-7 2-20 3-47 4-54 5-81 6-91 7-153.
Bowling: Shreck 7-0-16-2, Ireland 7-1-31-1, Thakor 4.3-0-36-1, Raine 6-0-57-1, Styris 4-0-25-2, Redfern 3-0-24-0.
Yorkshire beat Leicestershire by 3 wkts (D/L Method)