The Vitality T20 Blast has been running out of contention for the last few days with rain. South Group has seen two tied matches in 3 completed matches so far. Essex held a tie in their last match in an exciting match after being washed off by rain in their last match. Hampshire failed to defend the target against Sussex after rain helped them avoid defeat in their opening fixture. Both teams are still looking for their win, with two matches to be played respectively. We are in for a shocking action with local players, who want to make their mark in the absence of big international names.
The batting unit of Essex did not start well as their top order dropped to 52/4 in 8 overs. Ryan Ten Doscat (35 runs) and Adam Vettler (32 runs) set the pace with a 50+ partnership in between. P Walter gave several big hits to end his 20 overs to take his team to a total score of 143/6.
His bowling unit did not allow the opposition to gain the upper hand with the wicket at crucial moments. Paul Walter, Cameron Delport and Matthew Quinn took 2–2 wickets. Simon Hammer and Aaron Nijjar conceded just 50 runs in their combined 8 overs.
Top Betting Players:
Paul Walter – Paul Walter had a good all-round match both by bat and ball. He scored 22 runs off 13 balls to advance the innings and then took 2 wickets with the ball in his hand.
Matthew Quinn – Matthew Quinn kept his nerve with 9 at the crucial moment, conceding 8 off the last 4 balls. His last two balls came in the form of wickets and his team won their last match.
Hampshire were not lucky the second time as they finished with a defeat this time. Tom Alsop took the bowlers despite falling wickets all around him and scored 51 runs off 44 balls. This was followed by an unbeaten partnership of 88 runs by James Fuller (53 runs) and Holland (36 runs) to reach a total of 176 runs in their 20 overs.
Opening bowlers Ian Holland and Chris Full started with a combined spell of 8–0–40–1 in good style. But they failed to take advantage of a good start as James Fuller, Ryan Stevenson and Scott Currie gave runs at 4G pace with combined figures of 7.5–0–113–1. Mason cranes were economical off the ball.
Top Betting Players:
Ian Holland – Holland scored 36 off 22 balls with the help of 3 fours and 2 sixes and then strangled the opposition with figures of 4-0-19-0. His all-round skills will give his team good depth and balance.
Mason Crane – Mason Crane was the only bowler to score 4–0–20–1 with a good performance in the middle overs, giving the other bowlers runs at 14+ RPO at the other end.
According to the weather forecast Chelmsford has only a 10% chance of rain and we hope it will not have any impact in the game.
Camelsford is a high scoring venue where teams scored 180 consecutive runs. Middlesex also scored 184 runs in the only innings in the first match. Bowls must be cleverly operated to restrict batsmen with their field placement and execution in this pitch.
Chasing in batting friendly conditions is the best option as no goal is safe in these grounds.
Hampshire was able to score 176 despite Tom Alsop contributing very little from their top order, which reflected the depth of their batting attack. But his bowling attack lacks the X-factor compared to Essex, who were able to pull off the match in the final moments. The Essex batsmen will have to advance the accelerator in this match to score more than 160 runs on the board. We expect Essex to win this competition as they have an all-rounder than Hampshire.
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