South Africa frustrated as storm puts paid to warm-up

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The Independent Online

South Africa missed out on an opportunity to put their bowlers and fielders to the test as a thunderstorm put paid to the tourists' one-day warm-up match against Northamptonshire at Northampton yesterday.

The Proteas, who tackle England in their NatWest Series opener at The Oval on Saturday, managed only 229 for 6, and Northamptonshire were 45 for 1 from 15 overs in reply when the storm broke.

There was no brotherly love on show at Chelmsford as Zimbabwe warmed up for the NatWest Series battle against England on Thursday with a five-wicket win over Essex.

The game featured Andy and Grant Flower in opposition and it was the latter who had most to smile about as his unbeaten 60 saw Zimbabwe pass the county's total of 189 for 9 with 11 overs to spare.

In the National League, Glen Chapple kept Lancashire's promotion bid on track with a fine all-round performance to seal an improbable win against Durham at Old Trafford. Chapple, who became the Second Division's leading wicket-taker with 13 by claiming 3 for 38 in Durham's innings, then rescued the hosts from 24 for 4 in their reply.

Iain Sutcliffe was forced to retire hurt after being hit on the side by a delivery from Liam Plunkett, an 18-year-old making his first one-day appearance for Durham. Plunkett fired out Mal Loye, Carl Hooper and Alec Swann in the space of six balls, but Chapple kept his cool to hit an unbeaten 77 from 109 balls.

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