A career-best 77 from Craig Meschede with 5 sixes and 4 fours made Gloucestershire pay for a missed stumping as Glamorgan won by just 2 runs in the Vitality Blast at Sophia Gardens, Cardiff, with Michael Hogan and Timm van der Gugten sharing six wickets between them in a pulsating game of cricket.
With Colin Ingram still recovering from his recent illness, Glamorgan fielded the same side under the captaincy of Chris Cooke, that recorded a stunning four-wicket victory over Surrey at The Kia Oval on Tuesday evening. After losing the toss and being put in, Aneurin Donald and Usman Khawaja opened the batting as David Payne and Ryan Higgins shared the new ball. The latter was drilled over long-off for six by Donald followed by a square-drive for four. Khawaja then pulled Andrew Tye for four before Donald drove the Australian over extra-cover for six.
Khawaja also off-drove Payne for six before later in the over being bowled with the total on 45. Craig Meschede began with a trio of fours against Benny Howell – the first to fine-leg for four, followed by a pair of drives.to mid-off as Glamorgan ended the powerplay on 60/1. After a flurry of singles, Meschede on 23 survived a stumping chance as the wicket-keeper fumbled the ball.
On 82, Donald was caught at third man after miscuing a ramp stroke against Howell, and with Kiran Carlson as his new partner, Meschede straight drove the next ball from the all-rounder for six to see Glamorgan to 90/2 at the halfway stage. Carlson then pulled Noema-Barnett for six to take the Welsh county into three figures. The young tyro then square-drove Tye for four but next ball he lofted a drive to Klinger at mid-off.
105/3 saw Chris Cooke join Meschede who pulled Tom Smith for six, whilst Cooke opened his account with a crisp cover drive for four. Meschede again straight drove Howell for six en route to a 34-ball fifty. Cooke then swept and cover-drove Smith for six and four respectively, before harpooning the next ball into the Grandstand for another six.
Cooke then holed out at mid-wicket off Howell before 155/4 became 158/5 as Graham Wagg departed l.b.w. first ball. One run later Andrew Salter was caught behind in Payne’s final over before Nick Selman joined Meschede who plonked Payne over long-on for another six. Selman then straight drove Tye for six in the final over before Meschede pulled him for four and a six off the last ball of the innings to end unbeaten on 77.
With Glamorgan ending on 201/6 – their highest-ever total in T20 cricket at Cardiff - Gloucestershire needed 202 to win as Michael Klinger and Miles Hammond began their chase with Ruaidhri Smith opening the bowling. Hammond began with successive fours through the off-side before Klinger did the same to Timm van der Gugten.
Hammond then drilled the Dutchman over mid-wicket for six before Gloucestershire wer awarded five penalty runs. Hammond then pulled Hogan to Khawaja and departed for 21. Cockbain and Klinger then pushed the ball around for one’s and two’s before Smith returned at the River End and saw Klinger hole out at long-on before next ball removing Cockbain who was caught behind.
Howell responded by lofting Smith for a pair of sixes over mid-wicket before being bowled by Wagg. Jack Taylor responded by depositing Wagg for six over mid-wicket before Higgins straight drove Meschede for six as the target became 91 off 42 balls. Taylor responded by flicking Wagg to fine-leg for four. Later in the over Wagg was struck in his follow through and forced to leave the field as Carlson completed the over.
Higgins then skewed a drive over point for six against Meschede before Taylor struck successive balls from van der Gugten for four and six to square-leg. Higgins also deposited him over square-leg for six before holing out at long-on with the visitors on 148/5.
Noema-Barnett joined Taylor and clipped Hogan to fine-leg for four before holing out at mid-off to give the bowler his 99th wicket in the short format. The target became 42 off 18 balls as Roderick edged Meschede to fine-leg for four. Taylor also bludgeoned a pair of fours to long-off before also being struck on the head trying to pull Hogan.
Next ball, Roderick was at caught at fine-leg by Timm van der Gugten to give the Australian his 100th T20 wicket. Taylor then completed his fifty from 19 balls meaning that sixteen were needed off the final over. Van der Gugten then bowled Taylor first ball before AJ Tye then pulled next ball for six. A dot ball then followed before another massive pull for six by Tye, who was then bowled off the last ball to give Glamorgan a thrilling win.