Lloyd leads fightback

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The Independent Online

Graham Lloyd was the hero as Lancashire created Benson and Hedges Cup history at Old Trafford. The visitors, Leicestershire, were favourites to win after setting a victory target of 313, but with Lloyd contributing an undefeated 81, Lancashire prevailed by five wickets with three balls to spare.

Lloyd crowned an amazing contest in spectacular style, hoisting Gordon Parsons for six. The match aggregate of 630 runs was a Benson and Hedges record - as was Lancashire's total of 318 for a side batting second.

Leicestershire were left wondering how the match had slipped away from them. They had looked down and out after Hansie Cronje, their new import from South Africa, had scored 158, the fifth-highest individual contribution during the competition's 24-year history. And with James Whitaker joining him for an equally explosive 88 during a stand of 175, Leicestershire were apparently untouchable.

But with the England team-mates, Mike Atherton (71) and John Crawley (89), putting together a stand of 124, Lancashire were always up with the clock. Neil Fairbrother maintained the momentum with a quick 44, despite retiring hurt after being hit on the left thumb. But it was Lloyd who played the decisive knock, in only 73 balls.

Elsewhere, Daryll Cullinan's 101 not out dominated Derbyshire's 220 for 6 against Scotland in Glasgow before Devon Malcolm grabbed his second successive four-wicket haul in a 46-run victory. Gold award winner Cullinan hit his century off 110 balls.

Had it not been for him, a rejuvenated Scotland side might have pulled off a shock. Cullinan came to the wicket after a stuttering start from his teammates. Both Malcolm Marshall, making his home debut for Scotland, and Ian Stanger, pegged back the Derbyshire openers with some tight bowling.

Then Pete Steindl chipped in with the wickets of Adrian Rollins and Chris Adams, both caught behind by David Haggo, in quick succession. But Cullinan, supported by Kim Barnett, gradually took the initiative.

Glamorgan made it two wins out of two in the competition when they crushed Combined Universities by 217 runs at Cardiff.

David Hemp's 121 off 140 balls helped the home side to their highest total in the competition - 318 for 3. Darren Thomas took 6 for 20 in 47 deliveries as the students were skittled out for 101 in 34.2 overs.

Michael Smith's career-best 6 for 39 helped Gloucestershire dismiss Hampshire for 162 at Southampton. A Tony Wright half-century gave Gloucestershire their second win, this time by four wickets.

Jamie Hall made 59 and Neil Lenham 49 not out in Sussex's 63-run defeat of Ireland at Hove. Michael Rae, making his 50th appearance for Ireland, made a fine 73 before he was caught.

Minor Counties, dismissed for 70 on Sunday, were bowled out for 114 by Nottinghamshire at Leek. Kevin Evans took a competition-best 4 for 19 and Chris Lewis 3 for 11 before an opening stand of 92 between Paul Pollard (52) and Tim Robinson (52) helped Nottinghamshire to a nine-wicket win.