Northants win T20 title
David Willey starred with both bat and ball as Northamptonshire thrashed Surrey by 102 runs to win English county cricket’s Twenty20 final at Edgbaston on Saturday. Willey, the son of former England batsman turned umpire Peter Willey, smashed 60 off just 27 balls with six fours and four sixes as Northamptonshire piled up 194-2 in an innings reduced by rain to 18 overs. The left-arm fast-medium bowler then took four wickets for nine runs, including a hat-trick to end the match, as Surrey were bowled out for just 92 with Northamptonshire winning their first major trophy in 21 years. “This is once in a lifetime. I will probably never play like this again so I should probably quit while I’m ahead,” Willey told Sky Sports. He was only promoted to open after Kyle Coetzer injured a wrist in the seven-wicket semi-final win over Essex. However, his big-hitting was followed by half-centuries from captain Alex Wakely (59 not out) and Australia’s Cameron White (54 not out), who shared an unbroken stand of 107 from 57 balls.
Fit rules Umar out of tour
Pakistan wicketkeeper-batsman Umar Akmal is out of this month’s tour to Zimbabwe after he suffered an epileptic fit while on duty for Barbados in the Caribbean Premier League. Sarfraz Ahmed has been called into the tour squad as his replacement. “Sarfraz has been included in place of Umar who has been called back from the West Indies for medical checks,” a Pakistan Cricket Board official said. The official did not elaborate on Umar’s medical problem, but a family member who declined to be identified said that the player was on a flight to Jamaica when he had his epileptic fit. Opener Imran Farhat has also withdrawn from the squad, citing domestic problems. He will be replaced by the uncapped Shan Masood.
New Zealand earn win
Mishaps plagued the first race in the America’s Cup challenger finals on Saturday, as a broken daggerboard forced the Italian boat to drop out seconds after the start, allowing New Zealand to sail alone to win even after two crew member were washed overboard. Support boats rescued the sailors from the choppy waters as Emirates Team New Zealand continued sailing the course around windy San Francisco Bay with a torn trampoline faring. Averting disaster, New Zealand captured the first point of seven needed to win the Louis Vuitton Cup finals. The winner will sail against defending champion Oracle Team USA next month for the world’s oldest sporting trophy.
Lopez claims stage
Sky Pro Cycling’s David Lopez won the sixth stage of the Eneco Tour of the Low Countries on Saturday as Dutchman Tom Dumoulin claimed the leader’s jersey. Spaniard Lopez held off fast-finishing Zdenek Stybar and breakaway companion Maciej Paterski to win by two seconds with a group of five riders, lead by Dumoulin, another two seconds further back on the 150km stage from Riemst to La Redoute. Argos-Shimano climber Dumoulin’s fourth-placed finish helped him move into an eight-second lead over Czech Stybar with Ukrainian Andriy Grivko up to third at 23 seconds. Dumoulin had started the day in third place overall, but compatriot Lars Boom struggled over the day’s three climbs, falling out of contention, and previously second-placed Sylvain Chavanel was distanced, dropping to seventh overall.