Cobb shows no respect for the form book

Four-wicket haul for leg-spinning Leicestershire opener hands Somerset more misery at T20 finals

Leicestershire may be on course for their second wooden spoon in three years in the County Championship but they can call themselves the undisputed kings of Twenty20 after becoming the first team to be crowned champions for the third time at Edgbaston last night.

Back at the scene of the county's first triumph in 2004, Matthew Hoggard's side won by 18 runs as Somerset suffered the heartache of finishing runners-up for the third year in a row.

The man of the match was Leicestershire's 21-year-old leg-spinning opening batsman Josh Cobb, whose day got off to a terrible start when he was caught behind off the first ball bowled of the first semi-final against Lancashire, but which ended with him taking a career-best 4 for 22, having already held a key catch to remove Somerset's captain and run machine Marcus Trescothick and run out Arul Suppiah before he had faced a ball.

All four of Cobb's wickets involved boundary catches by the substitute fielder Matthew Boyce, who played in the semi-final against Lancashirebut was left out for the final. He was on the field because Will Jefferson tweaked an Achilles tendon.

Somerset must have thought there was a good chance that their luck would change after putting Leicestershire in and restricting them to 145 for 6 from their 20 overs. Left-arm spinner Murali Kartik conceded only 17 runs in his four overs after Jefferson and Adbul Razzaq had put on 70 for the third wicket.

But despite rolling out one of the strongest batting line-ups in the competition, Somerset were never able to establish any momentum on a pitch, taking spin, that Leicestershire's slow bowlers in particular exploited superbly. They collapsed after Paul Nixon took a superb diving catch to dismiss Kieron Pollard.

"I thought we had set a competitive total," a delighted Hoggard said. "We knew it was a pitch where it was hard to score off the slow bowlers and it was not going to get any better. But they have some big hitters in their team and the way our bowlers smothered them was fantastic."

Last night's winners picked up £200,000 in prize money and both finalists have an opportunity to play in next month's Twenty20 Champions League in India, although they will not automatically have a shot at the £1.55 million top prize. They must first take part in a six-team qualifying competition in Hyderabad that begins only two days after the end of the English domestic season.

A potential nightmare awaits Somerset, who could be required to play a CB40 final carry-over day at Lord's on Sunday, 18 September and their first match in Hyderabad two days later. Moreover, they will be without captain Marcus Trescothick, who no longer plays abroad because of his underlying anxiety disorder, and Pollard, who is committed to Mumbai Indians, and possibly both Jos Buttler and Craig Kieswetter, who are candidates for England's late-September T20 matches against West Indies.

Last night's finalists both won their semi-finals by the cricket equivalent of the penalty shoot-out as the English domestic game witnessed its first super over tie-breaker, immediately followed by another.

The first was triggered when Gareth Cross hit a six from seamer Wayne White's last ball to leave Lancashire on 79 for 6 from 11 overs, the Duckworth Lewis equivalent of Leicestershire's 132 for 6 from 18.

Hampshire snatched a second chance when Suppiah was run out with Somerset needing a single off Dominic Cork's last ball to reach 95 for 6 from 10 overs to beat Hampshire's 138 for 4 from 15.5 overs.

Somerset avenged last year's final defeat after their semi-final finished all square as Kieswetter and Buttler hit 16 off Hampshire's Shahid Afridi in Somerset's super over but Afridi, Jimmy Adams and James Vince could manage only five off Alfonso Thomas in reply, with Afridi – who smashed 80 off 42 balls in the match proper – caught on the midwicket boundary for four.

Leicestershire earlier defeated Lancashire after Jefferson had smashed 14 runs from the first four deliveries of veteran spinner Gary Keedy's over to beat the 13 Lancashire's Stephen Moore and Tom Smith had hit in six deliveries from Claude Handerson.

Scoreboard of the final

Somerset won toss

Leicestershire

Abdul Razzaq c & b Pollard 33/43/5/0

J J Cobb c Pollard b Kirby 18/10/2/1

W I Jefferson lbw b Suppiah 35/37/2/2

J du Toit c Kirby b Suppiah 2/19/0/0

†P A Nixon c Pollard b Meschede 4/4/1/0

A B McDonald c Thomas b Pollard 14/18/0/0

J W A Taylor not out 18/22/1/0

W A White not out 10/5/1/0

Extras b1 lb3 w7 11

Total (for 6, 20 overs) 145

Fall 1-24 2-94 3-96 4-101 5-102 6-127.

Did not bat C W Henderson, *M J Hoggard, J K H Naik.

Bowling Kartik 4-0-14-0; Thomas 4-0-47-0; Kirby 2-0-17-1; Pollard 4-0-24-2; Suppiah 4-0-27-2; Meschede 2-0-12-1.

Somerset

*M E Trescothick c Cobb b Hoggard 16/19/3/0

†C Kieswetter b McDonald 17/28/3/0

P D Trego c Sub b Cobb 35/38/5/0

J C Hildreth c Sub b Cobb 20/20/1/0

K A Pollard c Nixon b White 1/4/0/0

J C Buttler c Sub b Cobb 12/10/1/0

A V Suppiah run out 0/1/0/0

C A J Meschede c du Toit b Abdul Razzaq 9/16/0/0

A C Thomas c Sub b Cobb 7/7/0/0

M Kartik not out 7/7/0/0

S P Kirby not out 1/1/0/0

Extras lb1 w1 2

Total (for 9, 20 overs) 127

Fall 1-31 2-42 3-84 4-89 5-95 6-97 7-103 8-115 9-122.

Bowling Hoggard 3-0-17-1; Abdul Razzaq 3.2-0-26-1; Henderson 4-0-11-0; McDonald 3.4-0-32-1; Naik 1-0-10-0; Cobb 4-0-22-4; White 1-0-8-1.

Umpires R J Bailey and N A Mallender.

Leicestershire win by 18 runs.

World's leading Twentiests

Indian Premier League 2008-11:

Best strike-rate: V Sehwag 169.6 (Delhi Daredevils)

Highest batting average: S E Marsh 52.79 (Kings XI Punjab)

Most sixes: A C Gilchrist 82 (Deccan Chargers, Kings XI Punjab)

Highest score: B B McCullum 158* (Kolkata Knight Riders)

Best economy rate: R Ashwin 6.03 (Chennai Super Kings)

Best bowling average: S L Malinga 16.9 (Mumbai Indians)

Best bowling figures: Sohail Tanvir 6-14 (Rajasthan Royals)

English domestic Twenty20 2003-11:

Best strike-rate: A Symonds 219.05 (Kent Spitfires)

Highest batting average: A B McDonald 67 (Leicestershire Foxes)

Most sixes: M E Trescothick 77 (Somerset Sabres)

Highest score: G R Napier 152* (Essex Eagles)

Best economy rate: J Botha 5.64 (Northamptonshire Steelbacks)

Best bowling average: P D Collingwood 9.76 (Durham Dynamos)

Best bowling figures: A V Suppiah 6-5 (Somerset Sabres)

The Big Bash 2006-11:

Best strike-rate: A C Blizzard 163.82 (DEC Bushrangers)

Highest batting average: S E Marsh 34.43 (Retravision Warriors)

Most sixes: D J Hussey 34 (DEC Bushrangers) and D A Warner 34 (Speedblitz Blues)

Highest score: M G Dighton 111 (PFK Tasmanian Tigers)

Best economy rate: S R Clark 5.78 (Speedblitz Blues)

Best bowling average: M L Lewis 9.27 (DEC Bushrangers)

Best bowling figures: M G Dighton 6-25 (PFK Tasmanian Tigers)

Qualification: 10 innings and 20 overs

Compiled by James Charlton

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Fifa corruption: The 161-page dossier that exposes the organisation's dark heart

The 161-page dossier that exposes Fifa's dark heart

How did a group of corrupt officials turn football’s governing body into what was, in essence, a criminal enterprise? Chris Green and David Connett reveal all
Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

Art attack

Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
10 best wedding gift ideas

It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

Paul Scholes column

With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget fateful day in Belgium

Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget Heysel

Thirty years ago, 39 fans waiting to watch a European Cup final died as a result of a fatal cocktail of circumstances. Ian Herbert looks at how a club dealt with this tragedy
Amir Khan vs Chris Algieri: Khan’s audition for Floyd Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation, says Frank Warren

Khan’s audition for Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation

The Bolton fighter could be damned if he dazzles and damned if he doesn’t against Algieri, the man last seen being decked six times by Pacquiao, says Frank Warren
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor