Surrey 311 for 8 (Patel 131, Smith 54) beat Nottinghamshire 266 for 7 (Slater 69, Evison 54) by 33 runs (DLS method)
There's a generally held view that the life of a modern sportsperson is a glamorous affair full of travel and adulation. And it's true, the good days can be pretty damn good.
But not if you're a bowler confronted with Guildford. This is a desperately tough ground on which to bowl. The flat pitch is complemented by short boundaries and an outfield that slopes a little from the square meaning the ball picks up pace as it approaches the rope. Really, it's the sort of place to make a bowler wish they had persuaded a career in sewage treatment instead of sport. It is brutal.
The bare facts of this match are this: in 52 overs (following an early stoppage for rain), 548 runs were scored between these two sides. At one stage, as sixes rained down onto Woodbridge Road despite the high fencing designed to avoid such mishaps, you feared for the safety of pedestrians and motorists. One motorcyclist will, thankfully, arrive home this evening having no idea that a six from Rikki Clarke missed him by an inch.
Some will suggest that such surfaces, offering little balance between bat and ball, are not especially good for the game. And it is true that an attempt from a pensioner to throw a ball back into the ground - it took him four efforts - was one of the more competitive moments of the afternoon. The fence really did put up a terrific fight. But for anyone who wasn't a bowler - or especially sympathetic to bowlers - it provided rich entertainment for a crowd which included former Prime Minster, Sir John Major, lots of families on summer holiday and a stag party dressed as flamingos.
That Surrey prevailed was largely due to two career-best innings from Ryan Patel and Jamie Smith. It's worth reiterating that Surrey have lost 11 players to the Hundred and Nottinghamshire nine, so players like this are winning opportunities which might otherwise be denied them. Though whether any bowler feels this was an opportunity is debatable.
Surrey had reached 28 for 1 after eight overs before rain interrupted their innings. But, after a prolonged delay, they resumed in such style that they plundered 282 in the next 22 overs. Two hundred and eighty two! Their innings included 23 sixes and, not only the fastest List A century from a Surrey player since 2007, but what is believed to be the quickest List A half-century ever made in England (an equally quick one was made in Wales by Somerset's Graham Rose).
The century, reached in just 59 balls, was scored by Patel. It was an innings that improved his List A career-best by 90 and tripled the number of sixes he had hit across formats from five to 15. He later took an outstanding catch - running in and diving forward from the cover boundary - to account for Haseeb Hameed. He had, in short, a wonderful day.
Patel actually started relatively cautiously. With Surrey having lost an early wicket - Hashim Amla walked after gloving one down the legside - he took 27 deliveries to make his first 16 runs. But shortly after play resumed, Patel seemed to be a man reborn. He thrashed 115 from the final 43 balls of his innings, including 25 from a Matthew Montgomery over which included a six from each of the first three balls.
But the half-century from Jamie Smith was, if anything, even more eye-catching. It took only 16 deliveries (with two fours and six sixes) and contained several strikes that would have cleared the boundary on any ground. At one stage he added 50 in just 14 balls with Nico Reifer; Reifer contributed one scoring stroke.
Surrey actually scored 311. But the DLS algorithm reduced Nottinghamshire's target to 300. Understandably, that caused some consternation around the ground, but it seems the reasoning was that Surrey had benefited from eight powerplay overs and Notts had only six.
Notts' reply started brightly. Sol Budinger and Ben Slater added 71 for the first wicket in just 5.5 overs, with Slater going on to make a fine half-century, from 38 balls, and Joey Evison later made one from 37.
Given the deluge of runs, some of the bowling is worthy of particular praise. Matt Dunn, for example, delivered nine dot-balls in succession at one stage - an incredible achievement amid the carnage all around - while Clarke also ratcheted up the pressure with a masterful display of controlled variations. Connor McKerr and Dan Moriarty held their heads in a way the Notts bowlers struggled to match. In their way, these Surrey performances contributed just as much to Surrey's victory as Smith and Patel's batting.
Spare a thought for Peter Trego. Not only was he one of the few to miss out on this feast - he received what might have been the delivery of the day and nicked off for a second-ball duck - but he put down a chance in front of the beer tent. It did not go unnoticed.
It's worth noting the size of the crowd, too. Despite the rain, just over 3,000 spectators - or 'haters' as they might be called by some - stayed to watch this run-fest. At Taunton and Chelmsford, Scarborough and Bristol, this competition is continuing to win encouraging support. Might that show that the Hundred and the county game can co-exist? It certainly could be interpreted that way. Or maybe it just shows there's a market for cricket scheduled where and when people can see it. Twenty overs, 50 or 30 overs a side; we have a great game. Unless, of course, you're a bowler.