Northamptonshire Steelbacks’ tryst to retain momentum
Somerset to win
Northamptonshire Steelbacks would be battling it out against the Somerset County Cricket Club in the next game of the T20 Blast 2020. The Steelbacks are coming into this game with a massive win against the Worcestershire Rapids and this would add to their confidence in the next home game. Somerset’s season opener against the Birmingham Bears was washed away by rain and hence they will need to start afresh in this game.
Somerset has had a good record against Steelbacks in this format of the game and has won four out of the last five games the two sides have played. Northamptonshire Steelbacks lack of consistency in the last few seasons has been one of the major problems for the side where they have gone from a big win to big losses. It will be interesting to see if they are able to maintain their momentum into this game.
It was a massive win for Joshua Cobb’s side in the last game against the Worcestershire Rapids where they won it by 9 wickets with almost 5 overs to spare. The side bowled extremely well and was on song while chasing the small total. They don’t have a great record against Somerset and this is something Cobb would look to turn around in the next game.
Their batting looked rock solid in the last game with Paul Stirling playing an electrifying knock and was well supported by his opening partner Richard Levi. The duo will look to create this magic once again. Cobb, Adam Rossington, Alex Wakely and Saif Zaib add good balance to the middle order and it will be interesting to see how they perform. In Tom Sole they have a good finisher who can hit the ball hard and score quick runs.
Bowling is looking good at the moment with Ben Sanderson and Cobb bowling extremely tight lines in the last game. The side would benefit if they carry the same kind of form into the next game. Stirling and Graeme White also bowled well in the last game and so did Zaib. Nathan Buck and Brandon Glover add depth to this bowling attack leading up to this game.
Joshua Cobb (c), Richard Levi, Paul Stirling, Adam Rossington (wk), Alex Wakely, Saif Zaib, Tom Sole, Graeme White, Ben Sanderson, Nathan Buck, Brandon Glover
Adam Rossington, Richard Levi, Brandon Glover, Alex Wakely, Josh Cobb, Gareth Berg, Ben Sanderson, Paul Stirling, Saif Zaib, Graeme White, Nathan Buck
It has been raining cats and dogs this English summer and Tom Abell and his men saw their last game against the Birmingham Bears washed away by rain. He would be aware of the big challenge the Steelbacks pose after their thumping victory in the last game. They have a good record against the Steelbacks and would look to continue with it in this game as well.
Somerset’s batting is looking good at the moment with Steven Davies and George Bartlett at the top. Both these players are known for being good stroke makers. The middle order is packed with talent with the likes of Edward Byrom, James Hildreth and Tom Lammonby in the side. Roelof van der Merwe and Craig Overton down the order can do the big hitting for the side as they have done in the past.
They will need a good start from Max Waller and Ollie Sale after having seen the form of Steelbacks’ top-order in the last game. Jamie Overton and Roelof van der Merwe bring in good death bowling skills to this bowling line-up. Abell, Ben Green and Craig Overton increase the bowling options for the side which is a big bonus in this format.
Tom Abell (c), Steven Davies (wk), Edward Byrom, James Hildreth, Roelof van der Merwe, Tom Lammonby, Jamie Overton, Max Waller, Ben Green, Ollie Sale, Craig Overton
Ben Green, Steven Davies, Tom Abell, Craig Overton, Max Waller, RE Van Der Merwe, Ollie Sale, Jamie Overton, Eddie Byrom, George Bartlett, James Hildreth
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||22||1.24 mm.||3.3 k/h||From: W||51%|
|03h||18||0 mm.||4.18 k/h||From: WNW||14%|
|06h||15||0 mm.||3.49 k/h||From: NW||4%|
|09h||13||0 mm.||2.16 k/h||From: WNW||7%|
|12h||15||0 mm.||2.92 k/h||From: WNW||3%|
|15h||20||0 mm.||4.68 k/h||From: WNW||4%|
|18h||23||0 mm.||4.43 k/h||From: NW||3%|
|21h||23||0 mm.||3.45 k/h||From: NW||3%|
There would be slight cloud cover over Northampton on August 30 though we expect the weather to be good. The pitch has soaked in moisture in the last few days which will make batting slightly challenging as the bowlers will be able to extract good seam and bounce here. The side that bats first would be cautious in its approach and a score of 150 runs would be good one on this surface.
A small park, County Ground, Northampton is a place where batsmen and bowlers have both had their highs. The small size makes it ideal for playing big shots but there is always that extra bit of assistance for the fast bowlers where in the early overs of the game. This venue hasn’t been a great hunting ground for the spinners and forces them to be on the defensive.
In the last five T20 Blast games at this venue the side chasing the score has won on four occasions. The track is likely to assist the bowlers at the start of the game and ease up as the game progresses. Thus we expect the side winning the toss to invite the opposition to bat first in this game.
It will be an interesting game with one side bringing in years of good record while the other coming into it with great form. The Northamptonshire Steelbacks would be confident with the bat and the ball going into this contest but their inconsistency is something they will have to overcome. Somerset on the other hand is a well-balanced side that has utility players which allow them to bat deep and adds to their bowling options. It is expected to be a close contest but Somerset has the edge.
Somerset to win