The Hundred 2023: Jos Buttler leads Manchester Originals to eliminator win over Southern Brave

The Hundred, men's eliminator (Kia Oval):

Southern Brave 196-1 (100 balls): Allen 69 (38), Vince 56* (25), Conway 51* (38)

Manchester Originals 201-3 (96 balls): Buttler 82 (46), Salt 47 (17)

Manchester Originals won by seven wickets


Jos Buttler led a superb Manchester Originals chase of 197 to beat Southern Brave in the men's Hundred eliminator.

Brave looked well-placed for the final when they piled up 196-1 at The Oval through half-centuries from Finn Allen, James Vince and Devon Conway.

But Buttler added 83 in 32 balls with Phil Salt on the way to 82 from 46.

Originals completed the highest chase in Hundred history with four deliveries to spare and will meet Oval Invincibles in Sunday's final at Lord's.

It means the Originals have the chance of going one better than their defeat in last year's final, while Brave miss out on the opportunity to add to the title they won in 2021.

Earlier on Saturday, Northern Superchargers advanced from an abandoned women's eliminator against Welsh Fire by virtue of finishing higher in the group stage and will meet Southern Brave in the final.

Brilliant Buttler puts on a show

England captain Buttler remains the premier white-ball batter in the world and has been the standout performer in this year's men's Hundred - his 380 runs is more than 100 more than anyone else.

This was an outstanding display of his awesome talent, a magnificent demonstration befitting an atmospheric evening at The Oval. On a difficult night for the bowlers, the greasy surface making the ball hard to grip, Buttler was the headline act of some sensational batting.

Faced with such a huge total, Originals were given impetus by Salt, who took fours off the first three balls of the innings. Just after he clubbed Craig Overton for two successive sixes - Overton conceded 47 runs from 15 balls - Salt drilled the spin of Mitchell Santner to Vince at extra cover to depart for 47 from 17 balls.

But the opening stand had given the Originals the momentum and Buttler found a new ally in Max Holden.

The second-wicket pair added 63 in 33 balls. Buttler, who belted the ball through the covers and regularly planted it over long-on, reached 50 from 26.

After left-hander Holden skied the pace of Tymal Mills to fall for 31, Originals slowed slightly, going eight balls without a boundary before Buttler resumed his assault with a mighty blow for six off the leg-spin of Rehan Ahmed.

Two balls later, with Buttler on 71, Ahmed had the chance to run out Buttler at the non-striker's end, but was in no position to gather Vince's return. It would be the Brave's last chance.

By the time Buttler miscued Chris Jordan, Originals were left needing only 17 from 12 deliveries. The experienced Laurie Evans took them to the brink before Jamie Overton, Craig's twin, hit Jordan for six over long-off to seal a hugely impressive victory.

Not Brave enough

Brave had booked their place in the play-offs by beating Originals at Old Trafford on Wednesday and seemed on course for their second final when they piled up their highest total in The Hundred.

Allen recovered from being hit on the head by Richard Gleeson to crack 69 from 38 balls. His opening stand of 122 with Conway is the highest in the men's Hundred.

But after Allen was caught behind trying to flick Paul Walter, Brave stalled, going 18 balls without a boundary.

Vince and Conway were able to re-find the highest gear, helped by an Originals side that dawdled through their 100 balls. Reliant on pace, Originals bowled only 10 balls of Calvin Harrison's spin and missed the cut-off, meaning they had to bowl the final 11 deliveries with an extra fielder inside the 30-yard circle.

Brave capitalised, taking 61 runs in total from the final 20. Vince ended on 56 from 25, Conway batted through the innings for 51 off 38.

At halfway, it was the fourth-highest total in the men's Hundred and best in a play-off game, only for the Originals to show it was not enough.

'That was fantastic' - what they said

Match Hero and Manchester Originals captain Jos Buttler: "That was fantastic. It was a tough fielding innings but we knew with a good start we'd have a chance on a great pitch and a short boundary on one side.

"I was a bit disappointed that they got such a big score, there were a few things I could have done differently as captain but we just had to park it and once we got into our flow, it was hard to stop us.

"We'll be resting tonight and looking forward to a great day at Lord's tomorrow."

Manchester Originals opener Phil Salt speaking to Sky Sports: "I was disappointed to get out when I did. I thought the our partnership was going to finish it. Max Holden and Jamie Overton did great with Jos anchoring.

Manchester Originals opener Phil Salt to Sky Sports: "Sometimes [going hard at the beginning] it's going to be a hit and miss role. My job is to take pressure off Jos, when he bats through, he was not far off finishing the game all by himself. We're going nicely at the moment.

"We won this game last year. There's bigger fish to fry. We can't wait for the final, we spoke as a group on what it takes. Kat's [Simon Katich, Originals head coach] has always been very reassuring that it's our DNA to scrap, we don't do it the easy way, but we find it to the end of these competitions. I think if everyone pulls up well, we'll be grateful for this game. You have to roll with this schedule."