NatWest Pro40 - Division Two
Essex Eagles 304-1 (R S Bopara 112 no, J E R Gallian 108 no, M L Pettini 73) v Derbyshire Phantoms 279-8 (R Clarke 69, C J L Rogers 59, W W Hinds 53, R S Bopara 4-52)
Essex beat Derbyshire by 25 runs
Ravi Bopara starred with both bat and ball to help Essex record a 25-run win over Derbyshire in a high-scoring Pro40 League clash.
The England all-rounder smashed a brutal century in the Eagles' innings of 304-1 that also included an unbeaten hundred from Jason Gallian.
Not content with his destructive batting, Bopara then chipped in with 4-52 to make sure the Phantoms fell short on 279-8 after a valiant run chase.
Rikki Clarke top scored with 69 for the home side after Chris Rogers (59) and Wavell Hinds (53) had shared in a second-wicket stand of 87.
Following Dan Birch's departure for 39 off 36 balls, the duo's partnership put Derbyshire in with an outside chance of victory in the Division Two clash.
However, a moment of brilliance in the field by Essex's Tim Phillips, who threw the ball to team-mate Chris Wright before he stepped over the boundary rope after taking a catch in the deep, ended Hinds' innings.
Australian Rogers fell just five runs later to Ryan ten Doeschate and although they battled bravely right down to the last, the hosts were always battling against the tide.
Clarke - playing as a batter only due to an injured ankle - kept swinging right until the last, hitting 11 fours in his 45-ball knock that eventually came to an end on the penultimate ball of the contest.
It was Bopara who got the home captain out to cap a superb all-round display from the 23-year-old that will have no doubt caught the eye of the England's selectors.
He had already shown off his talents with the bat earlier in the day, belting 11 fours and seven sixes - four in succession in one Graham Wagg over - in his whirlwind 112 not out that saw him face just 59 balls.
Gallian also reached three figures for the Eagles and shared in two century stands, the first seeing him put on 143 with opening partner Mark Pettini (73).
The 161-run alliance with Bopara was a record for Essex against Derbyshire, 78 of them coming in the last five overs of the innings as Derbyshire's bowlers were put to the sword in the sunshine.