Durham secure their place in the Royal London Cup final against Glamorgan
Durham secured their place in the Royal London Cup final against Glamorgan after defeating Surrey by five wickets, successfully chasing down a total of 281 at Emirates Riverside.
Alex Lees and Scott Borthwick notched 75 and 71 respectively providing the foundation with a 119-run partnership for the second wicket. David Bedingham blasted a quick-fire fifty to send his team into the final at Trent Bridge on Thursday, where the club will aim to win their first trophy since 2014.
Earlier in the day, Chris Rushworth notched three early wickets to hand the hosts a perfect start.
However, former Durham captain Mark Stoneman scored a brilliant knock of 117 for the visitors, while Jamie Smith notched a career-best 85 in Surrey's total of 280 for eight.
But, their efforts were in vain as the home side were equal to the chase to progress.After inserting the visitors, Rushworth continued his outstanding tournament, capitalising on advantageous conditions from the Lumley End.
He found Ryan Patel's outside edge before producing a sublime delivery to remove Ollie Pope's middle stump.
Surrey's hero of their quarter-final win over Gloucestershire, Tim David, arrived at the crease after scoring two centuries and a fifty in his last three innings.
However, he was powerless against Rushworth, edging behind to Cameron Bancroft for only a single.
Former Durham opener Stoneman and Smith dug in to reach their fifty partnership. Smith was the first man to fifty, playing a patient knock to reach the milestone from 71 balls. Stoneman survived a strong lbw appeal from Scott Borthwick before working his way to his third half-century of the tournament.
The Surrey pair defied the home side with a stand of 155 to manoeuvre the visitors into position for a late assault.
Borthwick halted their progress by removing Smith lbw for a career-best 85. However, Stoneman thwarted his former club by posting his seventh List A century, striking nine boundaries and two sixes in the process.
Stoneman forged a late partnership with Nico Reifer to push the visitors up to 280 after further scalps from Borthwick and Luke Doneathy appeared to have halted a late charge. Stoneman was eventually run out for 117, but his century gave the Surrey bowlers a competitive total to defend on a flat wicket.
Durham made a solid start in their reply through Graham Clark, allowing the hosts to record an opening stand of 64. Clark fell four short of a half-century, picking out Reifer on the rope as he attempted to pull Matt Dunn to the boundary.
Borthwick and Lees were patient in their approach, nurdling the ball around the field to keep the hosts in touch with the required rate.
Lees was in total control at the crease, working his way to his sixth score of over fifty in the competition. With Borthwick, the duo passed their century stand for the second wicket, and the Durham skipper soon joined Lees in reaching a half-century, his second in a row.
Borthwick was handed the first of two lives by Dunn at fine leg, who failed to come down with a routine catch in the deep, which would cost the visitors.
David notched a vital breakthrough to dismiss Lees lbw, and then spurned a caught and bowled chance to make a double strike to remove Borthwick. The Durham skipper fell for a fine 71 to Dunn, but his brilliant innings and partnership with Lees ensured the hard work was done.
Bedingham all but powered the home side over the line with a 29-ball fifty before Cameron Bancroft struck the winning runs with 15 deliveries to spare to usher the North-East outfit in their first 50-over final in seven years.