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Vitality Blast T20 match results and reactions from today’s matches – 22nd August

Liam Dawson (Hampshire)

All the Vitality Blast T20 match results and reactions from today’s matches…

Middlesex v Hampshire, South Group Lord's, London 6:30 PM

Match Summary

Middlesex 128 all out

Hampshire 131-3

Result - Hampshire won by 7 wickets

Chris Morris and Kyle Abbott claimed three wickets apiece as Hampshire kept their Vitality Blast hopes alive with a 7-wicket win over Middlesex at Lord’s.

The men from the Ageas came through the Grace Gates knowing they needed four wins out of four to have a chance of making the knockout stages and their South African pace duo all but clinched the first of these as they bundled out the hosts for 128.

James Vince’s 69 made short work of the chase, leaving Middlesex, who have been riding high in the South Group standings still looking for a couple of wins to book their own place in the quarter-finals.

Middlesex were put in after losing the toss and struggled from the outset.

Paul Stirling’s poor form in T20 this year continued when he became Abbott’s first victim, LBW to the first ball of the fourth over.

Dawid Malan (23) and Stevie Eskinazi briefly threatened to post a score, but once the former had edged Morris (3-22) through to keeper Lewis McManus the Seaxes lost their way.

Eoin Morgan (20) continued the cameos trend, striking two sixes, before perishing attempting a third from the bowling of the excellent Liam Dawson (1-18), who bowled really well in tandem with South African debutant Tabraiz Shamsi (1-32).

Middlesex’s own debutant, Pakistan Test star Mohammed Hafeez tried to hold things together with 34, sharing a stand of 46 with wicketkeeper John Simpson.

But he was bowled by Chris Wood before Abbott (3-25) dismissed Simpson and Toby Roland-Jones with successive balls.

Morris picked up two late scalps as Middlesex lost their last five wickets for seven runs in 16 balls.

Having top scored with the bat, Hafeez struck an early blow with the ball when Rilee Rossouw drove him straight to Nathan Sowter at cover.

Hampshire skipper Vince though looked in ominous form from the get-go, one sumptuous cover-drive underlining his class.

Sam Northeast tried to follow his example only to blast a Roland-Jones delivery straight up in the air and give Stirling a simple catch.

But Dawson (35 not out), fresh from his unbeaten half-century against Surrey in the county Championship 24 hours earlier, proved a valuable ally to Vince, who went to 50 from 33 balls with his seventh boundary.

The 50 partnership came in just 32 deliveries and although Vince holed out on the cover boundary, Hampshire sprinted home with 31 balls to spare.

Turning Point: Middlesex have been heavily reliant on Malan when AB De Villiers has not been available, so his early demise always looked likely to spell trouble for the hosts.

Shot/Ball of the match: A few sixes were candidates here, but for sheer class, Dawson’s late cut to the third man boundary off Sowter gets the nod.

Unsung hero: Liam Dawson’s frugal spell of spin prevented the hosts from building any momentum and built a desperation in the batsmen that Morris and Abbott cashed in on later in the innings.

What’s next:  Middlesex will attempt to avenge their defeat to Sussex earlier in the competition when they play host to them at Uxbridge on Saturday, while Hampshire must build on this win when they entertain Essex on Sunday.

JAMES VINCE (Hampshire)

"It’s probably our best all round performance of the campaign so far.

"Right from the outset really, I thought the bowlers were fantastic. The seamers executed our plans really well in the powerplay, which we finished with two wickets.

"Daws (Liam Dawson) and Shamsi on his debut were brilliant through the middle there. The wicket took a little bit of spin and they bowled really well, controlled the board and picked up wickets and at the back end as well the seamers came back and did a brilliant job.

"The wicket seemed to hold up a bit when they were batting and maybe came on a little bit more under the lights, but when you are only chasing 129 if you get off to a reasonably good start you can afford to bide your time, get used to the pitch, pick off a couple of boundaries and at that point the bowlers start searching."

JOHN SIMPSON (Middlesex)

"To start with we were probably 30-40 runs short of where we wanted to be. 160 was probably a pretty good score on that wicket.

"We needed to extend some partnerships, but the guys who had got in got out which can happen in a game, especially in T20. It is one of those things that happens.

"We want to play an aggressive brand of cricket where you can get bowled out for 120 trying to get to 160 rather than just scraping to 130.

"The innings stalled towards the end and then we couldn’t create enough opportunities with the ball to put them under any pressure in the first six overs and they cantered home didn’t they."


Sussex v Essex, South Group County Ground, Hove 6:30 PM

Match Summary

Essex Eagles 168-5

Sussex Sharks 159-9

Result: Essex Eagles won by nine runs

The Sussex Sharks lost only their second game in this season’s Vitality Blast when they were beaten by an Essex Eagles side who had virtually given up all hope of qualifying for the quarter finals after just two wins in ten outings.

The table-topping Sharks, chasing 169, got off to a stuttering start when they lost their big-hitting trio of Phil Salt, Luke Wright and Alex Carey in the opening four overs.

With the ball not coming onto the bat batting was not easy.  But the Sharks innings was revived by a fourth wicket stand of 65 in just 7 overs between Laurie Evans and David Wiese which ended when Evans hit a high full-toss from Walter to Harmer at mid-off for a 30-ball 35.

Sussex were without Delray Rawlins, who is on international duty with Bermuda, and it left a hole in their middle-order which Harry Finch was unable to fill; he was out for a duck.

There was always hope for the Sharks while the long-hitting Wiese was the crease.  The South African reached 2,000 career runs in T20 cricket as he raced to his fifty from 26 deliveries, with eight fours and a six.

But when Wiese was lbw to Harmer for a magnificent 36-ball 66 you could hear the groans from another sell-out home crowd, although a run-a-ball 19 from Chris Jordan briefly kept the flame alive. Mohammad Amir took four wickets for 29 runs.

The Essex innings  revolved around a fifth wicket partnership of 82 in eight overs between Dan Lawrence (59 not out) and Ravi Bopara (45).  They came together in the 12th over and were only parted in the last, when Chris Jordan took a magnificent tumbling catch at long-off to dismiss Bopara.

Lawrence hit both Danny Briggs and  Wiese for successive sixes and there were two fours too in his 43-ball innings.  Bopara’s 24-ball effort gave him a strike rate of 187.50.  He saved the best to last, hitting Reece Topley over extra-cover for an effortless six in the final over.  There was another six and four fours as he and Lawrence rescued the Eagles’ innings from the doldrums of 84 for four in the 12th over.

The Sussex attack was missing not only Jofra Archer – who was taking six for 45 for England at Headingley – but also the injured Tymal Mills and the departed Rashid Khan. New signing Jason Behrendorff, the Australia World Cup bowler, made his debut for the Sharks and soon made an impact with an early catch and a run-out, but his wicketless four over stint went for 34.

THE TURNING POINT: David Wiese getting out lbw to Simon Harmer when he was winning the match single-handed.

SHOT OF THE MATCH: A straight six by Dan Lawrence off Danny Briggs.

THE UNSUNG HERO:  Will Beer, the Sharks leggie, took two wickets and conceded just 19 runs in four overs of inventive variation to give the Sharks a chance.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Sussex Sharks play Middlesex at Uxbridge on Saturday while the Eagles face Hampshire at Southampton on Sunday.

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