GARETH Breese bagged three wickets to help Durham demolish Warwickshire for just 165 in today’s Royal London One-Day Cup final at Lord’s.
Breese, in his final one-day game for the county after a decade at the Emirates ICG, took 3-30 in seven overs, helping polish off the Bears, who had slumped to 68-5 as Paul Collingwood, Chris Rushworth and Ben Stokes held sway.
The toss was always likely to prove a major factor on a damp and overcast morning in north London but Durham, having elected to field, exploited the conditions to the full.
Veteran spinner Gareth Breese took three wickets in his last game before retirement while Ben Stokes, Chris Rushworth, Paul Collingwood all chipped in with two apiece.
Warwickshire struggled to establish a real foothold at any point in the innings with captain Varun Chopra (64) the only batsman to really trouble the scoreboard.
Rushworth (two for 24), fresh from his club-record 15-wicket haul against Northamptonshire, made the early breakthrough, drawing an edge from William Porterfield (nine) who was caught behind by Phil Mustard.
At 16 for one, Jonathan Trott came to the crease full of confidence as the second leading run-scorer in the competition but Warwickshire’s dangerman was caught lbw by Collingwood (two for 36) for two.
Collingwood and Durham’s morning should have got even better soon after but the usually reliable fielder spilled a straightforward catch in the slips after Tim Ambrose mistimed a cut off Stokes (two for 25).
Warwickshire reached 62 for two and looked to be rebuilding but three wickets in three overs put Durham in the driving seat.
Ambrose (11) was first to fall, edging into the hands of Breese, and six balls later, Laurie Evans was out for a duck, looping Stokes’ short ball into gully where Breese was again waiting to take an easy catch.
The chances kept coming as Stokes drew a nick from Rikki Clarke which was put down by Mustard but Stokes made sure soon after, clean bowling Clarke for two to leave Warwickshire in deep trouble at 68 for five.
The batting side turned to the in-form Chris Woakes for inspiration and, together with Chopra, the pair temporarily steadied the ship.
Warwickshire passed the 100 mark in the 30th over and Chopra made his fifty soon after but just as Durham’s momentum looked to be fading, the 47-run partnership came to a spectacular end.
Woakes lifted Breese (three for 30) up to mid on where Calum MacLeod was back-pedalling but the Scot kept his balance just long enough to snatch the ball from the air and dismiss the all-rounder for 23.
With Woakes gone, the onus fell on Chopra to carry the innings but the Warwickshire captain’s stubborn resistance ended when he was bowled by Rushworth.
The tail-enders were quickly dispatched as Jeetan Patel (14) and Oliver Hannon-Dalby (six) were both caught off Breese before Boyd Rankin was run out for one to leave Ateeq Javid (22) the only man unbeaten after 47 overs.
Durham lost two quick wickets when they began their innings, with Phil Mustard bowled by Clarke without scoring, after facing four balls. Calum MacLeod followed Mustard for nought, caught by Chopra off Clarke after just seven balls. That left them 12-2.
But captain Mark Stoneman steadied the ship alongside Keaton Jennings and led Durham to 48-2 after nine overs without further mishap.
After losing Jennings for eight, from 27 balls, Stoneman was dismissed for a run-a-ball 52, trapped leg before – like Jennings – by Jeetan Patel.
That left Durham 74-4, with Collingwood joining Scott Borthwick in the middle.
Borthwick was the third leg before victim of Patel, for 12, to leave Durham 86-5, as Stokes teamed up with Collingwood. Durham were 102-5 at the halfway mark, after 25 overs.
It was becoming a real struggle for Durham and Collingwood went for 21, caught by Porterfield off the bowling of Oliver Hannon-Dalby, at 117-6.
Gordon Muchall added nine before going lbw to Patel, claiming a fourth victim, as Durham were 130-7, 36 runs short of victory.