Essex 177 for 6 (Khushi 61, McIlroy 4-36) beat Glamorgan 175 for 6 (Carlson 43, Harmer 2-43) by four wickets
Academy graduate Khushi crashed a 37-ball 61 as Essex comfortably chased down 175, despite losing three early wickets thanks to Jamie McIlroy’s four for 36. Khushi is in prime position to push for a regular first-team spot after Lawrence announced he was to join Surrey from next season and showed his promise with an innings that included four huge sixes.
Paul Walter continued his fine form against Glamorgan with 43, before Matt Critchley and Daniel Sams saw off most the remaining runs with 24 balls to spare.
Having been stuck in on a fresh pitch, Kiran Carlson got the visitors off to a flyer with 43 off 25 balls, which included a straight six off Sams and a swatted pull maximum off Sam Cook.
Sam Northeast, who had earlier been meekly dropped, was the first of three catches for Walter at long-on – with Colin Ingram and Chris Cooke also picking out the tallest man on the field – as Glamorgan reached 55 for 1 in the powerplay.
Glamorgan’s good start was dented by Ingram and Carlson falling in successive overs as Essex claimed control of the middle overs to have Glamorgan 122 for 4 after 15 – with Cooke falling to Harmer.
Critchley lured Billy Root to swing to wide long-on but Timm van der Gugten smashed Harmer for two sixes in an 18 run over to push Glamorgan closer towards par. Van der Gugten was eventually run out in the final over after a brutal 14-ball 33 as Glamorgan ended up on 175 for 6 – with Sams and Critchley both boasting economical figures of 1 for 20 to keep the total narrowly in the Eagles’ favour.
Essex take an aggressive approach to their batting – the results coming in two forms. On one side you have two wickets in the first over and three in the powerplay, leaving them 35 for 3: Robin Das slogged his first ball to deep square leg and Michael Pepper ramped the next ball behind. Jamie McIlroy couldn’t get a hat-trick but Josh Rymell chipped to mid-on in the left-armer’s following over.
On the other, you had Khushi pinging three sixes in the first three overs as he moved to 33 off his first 11 balls, although he took fewer risks to reach his third half-century in 29 balls.
Walter joined Khushi and the pair found a nice rhythm in a 80-run stand in 47 balls. Walter had scored 58 and 78 in his previous two innings against Glamorgan, he struck 42 before his fourth attempt at a six top-edged to short third.
Khushi was sensationally caught and bowled by van der Gugten five balls later to leave 59 needed off 51 balls. But Sams and Critchley made sure the result wasn’t in danger, with the former boshing 41 off 16 – Essex scoring 57 off the last 24 balls they faced.