Shoaib rips heart out of Derbyshire order

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The Independent Online

The return of Shoaib Akhtar inspired Durham to a seven-wicket win over Derbyshire, who were dismissed for a miserable 82 in the National League match at Chester-le-Street yesterday.

After missing the last two Championship games because of his rib injury, the Pakistan fast bowler took four of the wickets in reducing the visitors to 19 for 6. The last-wicket stand between Derbyshire's captain, Luke Sutton, and the West Indian Daren Powell, doubled the rest of their side's total.

Sutton was out for 43, made off 110 balls, with three balls unused after hitting the only two fours of the innings. Powell drove the only six over long-on, off his fellow Jamaican Gareth Breese, in his unbeaten 18. Durham matched Derbyshire's boundary tally inside four overs.

An unbeaten 80 from Kevin Pietersen and competition-best figures of 4 for 28 for Greg Smith gave Nottinghamshire a straightforward seven-wicket victory over Sussex. Pietersen hit 11 fours and a six in his 85-ball innings in a partnership of 115 for the second wicket with Russell Warren, who made 45.

The Sussex captain, Chris Adams, had scored 56 from his team's total of 176, with Smith claiming the last three wickets in two overs. Sussex never looked like posting a competitive total in the face of tight bowling and excellent wicketkeeping from Chris Read, who claimed three catches and two spectacular stumpings.

A sparkling undefeated innings of 119 from Paul Weekes and 54 by Owais Shah steered Middlesex to victory over Somerset at Lord's and to the top of Second Division of the National League.

The pair put on 127 for the second wicket as Middlesex successfully chased 249 to win, finishing on 250 for 4 with eight balls remaining.