Leicestershire defeated Warwickshire by seven wickets
Warwickshire's unreliable one-day form continued as they subsided to a sevenwicket loss against Leicestershire.
After a heartening victory over Surrey the signs were that Warwickshire had turned the corner in one- day cricket but another top-order batting failure sentenced them to their third totesport League loss of the season. The result sees them slip into the bottom half of the table.
Yet there are some signs that their one-day cricket is improving. Alex Loudon's half-century was his second in two innings while Jonathan Trott also hit a competition-best 93 not out. With Jim Troughton also scoring heavily in one-day cricket of late, there is some room for optimism that the batsmen are learning the art of the one-day game.
The bowlers showed character, too, fighting hard to defend an inadequate total. Leicestershire were on top from the first ball of the match but that they crossed the victory line with only eight balls to spare says much for disciplined bowling by Dougie Brown, Neil Carter and the spinners.
Perhaps most importantly, there was good news for England. Ashley Giles came through the match unscathed and improved noticeably as his spell wore on. Unless there is any reaction overnight, he will join up with England this week.
Warwickshire never recovered from a poor start to their innings. Nick Knight won the toss and elected to bat but, in seamer-friendly conditions, the home batsmen could hardly lay bat on ball as the first 14 overs produced only 29 runs.
Carter managed to be dropped, dismissed and score a single from the first ball of the match. His offer of a catch to second slip was spurned but his attempt to steal two was punished when Charl Willoughby's direct hit from third man found him well out.
It took Ian Bell 23 deliveries to get off the mark and he played and missed regularly before edging a loose drive while Knight (47 balls), who also lived dangerously, finally departed via a thin edge to the wicketkeeper off the excellent Willoughby. Troughton also departed quickly, wafting outside off stump. At 43 for four after 16 overs, Warwickshire were in deep trouble.
That they set a competitive total at all was due to a super partnership of 98 in 20 overs between Trott (108 balls, five fours and three sixes) and Loudon (58 balls, five fours).
Trott started cautiously. He had a top score of 17 and averaged five in one-day cricket before this match, and was missed at cover - a low, tough chance - when on four.
There was only a single four - a reverse sweep at that - and one six (a slogsweep off Henderson) in his first 50 but Trott kept his head. He manoeuvred the ball into the gaps sensibly and, as he grew in confidence, unleashed some belligerent shots, including an audacious reverse sweep over point and two more sixes off the slow bowlers.
Loudon again batted beautifully. More fluent than Trott, at least initially, he swept well and went to his half-century (55 balls) 20 deliveries faster than Trott. Loudon was run out, however, responding to Trott's call for an unlikely single. The total was about 20 fewer than par for the pitch.
In reply, an opening stand of 100 in 24 overs between Darren Maddy and 20-year-old Tom New (82 balls, two fours and a six) all but settled the matter. The seventh List A century of Maddy's career was a masterclass in how to pace a one-day innings but the hosts had chances to dismiss him early.
Maddy (119 balls, 12 fours) was given two reprieves. A direct hit would have run him out before he had scored and, when on 22, Loudon spilt a tough chance off Bell. Cunningly though Knight fiddled his bowlers, he could not engineer the breakthrough. Warwickshire paid the price for a lack of cutting edge to the attack.