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Yorkshire hit for six by Sydney Sixers
Yorkshire came back down to earth with a monumental bump thanks to a landslide Champions League t20 defeat against Sydney Sixers at Newlands in Cape Town.
The White Rose opened their group ‘B’ campaign with an eight-wicket loss as they could only post 96-9, their second lowest total in Twenty20 history.
Sydney knocked off the runs required with 67 balls to spare, consigning the county to only a third defeat in 18 Twenty20 matches this year.
It came on the back of two stunning qualifying wins against UVA Next and Trinidad and Tobago last week.
A clash with the hallmark of men versus boys actually began well for the Tykes, who elected to bat first and scored 19 off the first two overs.
Thirteen runs came off Mitchell Starc’s first over, the second of the innings, but there was only one other double-figure over as Joe Root top-scored with 25 off 24 balls, including the sole six.
It will have been no surprise to Yorkshire fans to see Starc finish with 3-21 from his four overs, with two wickets in the last of the innings.
And another former Yorkshire player enjoyed his afternoon too, as Michael Lumb top-scored with 43 not out off 24 balls in reply.
Captain Brad Haddin also clinched the man-of-the-match award with a blistering 41 off 21.
Only Root and Phil Jaques (21 off 19 balls) passed 20, while Gale was one of three batsmen whose struggles against the tearaway pace trio of Starc, Pat Cummins (2-13) and Josh Hazlewood (1-9) were dramatic.
Gale posted eight off 18 balls, Adam Lyth 18 off 25 and Gary Ballance eight off 17.
Yorkshire could not recover, and Starc’s dismissals of big mate Azeem Rafiq and Steve Patterson, caught at third-man and bowled respectively, in the last over put the tin lid on things.
A virtually impossible defence it may have been, but at least it started in encouraging fashion as Ryan Sidebottom had Shane Watson caught at deep backward square-leg after seven balls.
But that brought Haddin to the crease, who teed off with the aim of finishing the contest in double-quick time to boost their net run-rate, which could be crucial in terms of semi-final qualification.
He and Lumb shared 78 in seven overs for the second wicket before holing out to deep mid-wicket off Rafiq with the first ball of ninth over.
As Yorkshire’s net run-rate has been damaged, they are likely to have to win their next three to have a chance of qualification, starting with Mumbai Indians tomorrow (4.30pm UK).
Meanwhile, experienced batsman Anthony McGrath is not expected to secure a new deal with Yorkshire for the 2013 season.