Notts left in a tangle by Dagnall's mixed bag

<preform>Leicestershire 150-7 Nottinghamshire 110</br> <i>Leicestershire won by 40 runs</i></preform>
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The tweaked hamstring that forced the former England all-rounder Philip DeFreitas to sit out this match proved to be a blessing for Leicestershire after his stand-in propelled them to victory and a likely place in the Twenty20 Cup quarter-finals.

The tweaked hamstring that forced the former England all-rounder Philip DeFreitas to sit out this match proved to be a blessing for Leicestershire after his stand-in propelled them to victory and a likely place in the Twenty20 Cup quarter-finals.

Summoned to fill the breach, the seamer Charlie Dagnall rewarded his county by taking four wickets for 22, his best figures in any form of one-day cricket, which also made him the first Leicestershire bowler to take four wickets in a Twenty20 Cup match.

Bowling with clever variety, Dagnall struck decisive blows in his first over, deceiving Bilal Shafayat with a slower ball that was edged to point and trapping the dangerous Kevin Pietersen in front with the next delivery.

This left Nottinghamshire on 23 for 3 as they chased Leicestershire's 150, a position which turned from difficult to fairly hopeless as Dagnall continued to inflict damage, stopping first Russell Warren and then Mark Ealham in their tracks when it appeared either could drag the visitors out of trouble.

In the event, having been reduced to 58 for 5 when Ealham was bowled, Nottinghamshire failed even to complete their 20 overs, dismissed for 110 from 19.2. Dagnall's economy was bettered by strike bowler Mark Cleary, who finished with 3 for 11 from three overs, and Nottinghamshire may well have to win at Old Trafford tomorrow to stay in the competition.

Dagnall is one of the more interesting characters in county cricket. A one-time presenter on a satellite TV shopping channel, the 28-year-old's past life includes singing lead vocals (accompanying himself on the maracas) in a pop group known as Frisco Crabbe and the Atlantic Frantics.

Not surprisingly, he was man of the match last night, a decision which went down well with a crowd of 5,500, who had entered into the festive mood so vigorously promoted at these games. The side attractions here included a mechanical bucking bronco, while there were scenes of celebration off the field when the only six of the Nottinghamshire innings, propelled over mid-wicket by Warren, earned a year's supply of beer for a spectator brave enough to catch it.

Leicestershire's batsmen had struggled for fluency, too, on a slow, green-tinged pitch, but 31 off 24 balls by Darren Stevens, 23 off 30 by Paul Nixon and Jeremy Snape's unbeaten 28 from 26 took them just above par.

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