The North finally claimed their first victory over Delray Rawlins and his South teammates in the North-South Series at the fifth attempt to take this year’s series into a decider on Friday.
They held their nerve in the field despite a second consecutive century from South opener Nick Gubbins, with Lancashire leg-spinner Matt Parkinson claiming three important wickets.
Earlier the Worcestershire pair of Joe Clarke and Brett D’Oliveira had laid the foundations for a strong North total.
But they were in danger of losing their way until a swashbuckling 64 from Derbyshire all-rounder Matt Critchley on his North debut ensured the South had too much to chase.
Even then there were times in the South reply when the North seemed to be staring at a fifth consecutive defeat, as Gubbins again played beautifully, and Laurie Evans hit 64 from 67 balls.
But Richard Gleeson yorked Gubbins for 109 and then dismissed Rawlins two balls later to change the momentum, and Parkinson then showed his skill to keep up the pressure.
Sam Northeast chose to bowl after ending a run of four consecutive toss defeats for the South, but the North got off to a flier with an opening stand of 95 inside 11 overs between Joe Clarke and Alex Davies.
Paul Walter broke the stand by bowling Davies for 42 with a slower ball, then had Sam Hain snapped up by Rawlins at mid-wicket.
Clarke powered on to 71 from 58 balls with two sixes and nine fours but his dismissal, pulling Dom Bess to mid-wicket where Sam Curran took a sharp catch, followed the loss of Adam Hose in the previous over, and meant that at 132 for four the North had lost four for 37.
As in the first game, Brett D’Oliveira joined his captain Steven Mullaney to steady the ship in an intelligent fifth-wicket stand.
..71 (58) Joe Clarke c Sam Curran b Dominic Bess
..42 (32) Alex Davies b Paul Walter
..05 (15) Sam Hain c Delray Rawlins b Paul Walter
..07 (15) Adam Hose c Sam Curran b Ravi Patel
..42 (46) Steven Mullaney c Northeast b Dominic Bess
..79 (83) Brett D'Oliveira b Sam Curran
..64 (37) Matthew Critchley c Delray Rawlins b Paul Walter
..07 (10) Matthew Fisher c Pope b Sam Curran
..06 (07) Richard Gleeson Not Out
..00 (00) Saqib Mahmood Not Out
..12 Extras (6nb-2w-4lb)
335 Total for 8 Wickets after 50 overs
Fall of Wicket: 1-95 (Davies), 2-109 (Hain), 3-131 (Hose), 4-132 (Clarke), 5-240 (Mullaney), 6-287 (D'Oliveira), 7-306 (Fisher), 8-334 (Critchley)
10.-2-75-2 Sam Curran
8.0-0-59-0 Jamie Porter
10.-0-68-1 Ravi Patel
9.0-1-67-3 Paul Walter
10.-1-47-2 Dominic Bess
3.0-0-15-0 Delray Rawlins
..19 (17) Daniel Bell-Drummond c Steven Mullaney b Brett D'Oliveira
109 (89) Nick Gubbins b Richard Gleeson
..16 (22) Northeast c Alex Davies b Saqib Mahmood
..64 (67) Laurie Evans c Fisher b Matthew Parkinson
..00 (02) Delray Rawlins b Richard Gleeson
..42 (35) Ollie Pope b Saqib Mahmood
..02 (06) Sam Curran st Alex Davies b Matthew Parkinson
..19 (22) Paul Walter c Sam Hain b Steven Mullaney
..01 (03) Dominic Bess c Alex Davies b Matt Fisher
..00 (02) Jamie Porter c Brett D'Oliveira b Matthew Parkinson
..02 (03) Ravi Patel Not Out
..15 Extras (4nb-6w-5p)
289 Total All Out after 44.3 overs
Fall of Wicket: 1-61 (Bell-Drummond), 2-102 (Northeast), 3-203 (Gubbins), 4-204 (Rawlins), 5-221 (Evans), 6-235 (Curran), 7-269 (Walter), 8-286 (Bess), 9-287 (Porter), 10-289 (Pope)
8.0-0-58-1 Matt Fisher
8.0-0-65-2 Richard Gleeson
8.0-0-44-1 Brett D'Oliveira
7.3-0-47-2 Saqib Mahmood
9.0-0-47-3 Matthew Parkinson
4.0-0-23-1 Steven Mullaney