Wes Durston century in vain as Derbyshire beaten by Surrey in Royal London Cup

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Wes Durston’s brilliant 129 from 98 balls was not enough for Derbyshire at Guildford, where classy earlier hundreds from both Steven Davies and Kumar Sangakkara propelled Surrey to 326 for 6 and an eventual 77-run victory in a high-scoring Royal London One-Day Cup match.

A crowd of 3,000 saw some rich entertainment in warm sunshine as Davies and Sangakkara added 204 in 31 overs for Surrey’s second wicket, a county one-day record against Derbyshire, only for Durston to lead the chase with a thrilling knock that contained five sixes and 16 fours.

No other Derbyshire batsman could give him much support, however, after Billy Godleman had scored just 27 in an opening stand of 115 in 17 overs, and Durston had just swung his fifth six, over wide long on off Tom Curran, when two balls later he tried to repeat the stroke and skied to Curran’s younger brother Sam, who took a well-judged catch at mid wicket.

Durston’s exit left Derbyshire 203 for five in the 32nd over, and their lower order then fell away to 249 all out. Surrey’s win, their fourth in five One-Day Cup games this season, strengthens their position at the top of Group A.

Scott Elstone made 39, before being ninth out, but no one else made a score of note for Derbyshire as James Burke, the young Surrey fast bowling all-rounder, finished with a one-day career-best of 5 for 28.

Davies’s 115, from 117 balls and with two sixes and nine fours, took his prolific competition tally to 351 runs in four innings at an average of 87.75. Two of his previous scores in the competition were 99 and 98.

Sangakkara, who just pipped Davies to the century mark, scored 109 from 104 balls with three sixes and 13 fours and, at the end of the innings, there were also breezy cameos from Zafar Ansari and Tom Curran.

For Derbyshire, there was a chastening ten overs with the ball for Mark Footitt, the left-arm fast bowler who has been added to England’s fourth Ashes Test squad. Footitt’s final figures were an eye-watering 10-1-86-2, with his second spell of three overs costing 38 runs as Davies and Sangakkara cut loose.

Surrey, put in, were given a fine start by Jason Roy, who drove Footitt twice wide of mid on for fours in the fast bowler’s opening over and also hit him through extra cover and straight for further boundaries in a bright 24.

Footitt, however, made one bounce at Roy to have him taken at the wicket in his fourth over but, from 40 for one, the Surrey innings was dominated by Davies and Sangakkara.

The two left-handers built their partnership expertly, with Davies twice pulling Alex Hughes’s medium pace for six and Sangakkara beating his second wicket partner to three figures with a thrilling assault on Footitt when the paceman returned for his second spell.

From successive balls, Sangakkara square drove Footitt for four before flicking him over the mid wicket ropes for two sixes. Spectators were on their feet applauding again in the next over, when Davies pushed a ball from off spinner Durston to deep cover to complete his own hundred from 96 balls, two less than it had taken the great Sri Lankan.

Sangakkara was stumped as he gave Durston the charge in the 38th over and Surrey lost another four wickets while adding a further 82 runs in the remaining overs.

Rory Burns fell for 11, mis-hitting a full toss from Hughes to extra cover, and Davies was held on the deep mid wicket boundary off the same bowler.

Ansari chipped the suffering Footitt over the short square leg boundary for six in a useful unbeaten 25, but Footitt did at least have Tom Curran caught at deep cover for 29 off 22 balls in the closing overs.

Gary Wilson lofted Ben Cotton to long off to depart for 2 in the final over but Burke took well-run twos from the last two balls of the innings to give Surrey their highest List A total against Derbyshire.