Worcestershire and Leicestershire are both coming off wins in their last respective games.
Back Leicestershire to win this clash.
Not much separates Worcestershire Rapids and Leicestershire Foxes in the North Group. Worcestershire is in 6th place with 3 wins and 3 losses and Leicestershire is the 8th place with 3 wins and 5 losses. Both have had a poor run in the T20 Blast 2021 season but Leicestershire is currently on a 3-match winning spree and could be in for a turnaround. It will be interesting to see which of them emerges as the winner when the two clash on the 26th at the County Ground.
Worcestershire have been incredibly inconsistent this season. They started with two consecutive losses but their campaign has ever since derailed. In their last 3 games, they have lost 2 and won 1.
The Rapids would take confidence from the fact that they are coming off a win against Durham in their last match. The Worcs were set a steep target of 179 runs and chased it down in 19.3 overs with 8 wickets left. Jake Libby (78* off 55 balls) and opener Brett D'Oliveira (67 off 49 balls) were the stars of the chase. Libby, in fact, has been the leading run-getter of the season for the Worcs with 193 runs at an average of 48.25. He’s followed by DOliveira (178 runs at 29.66) and Riki Wessels (175 runs at 25).
This summer's standout bowler for Worcestershire has been Charlie Morris (10 wickets at an economy of 9.41). His spell of 3-37 in the last game also proved to be crucial. Australian seamer Ben Dwarshuis (8 wickets at 8.72) has been impressive too, but spinner Ish Sodhi has yet to find his groove and has proven to be expensive going at an economy of 9.20 taking just 4 wickets.
Riki Wessels, Brett DOliveira, Jake Libby, Daryl Mitchell, Ben Cox (c & wk), Ross Whiteley, Ed Barnard, Ben Dwarshuis, Ish Sodhi, Dillon Pennington, Charlie Morris
|B D Oliveira||67||49||6||2||136.73|
Riki Wessels, Jake Libby, Ish Sodhi, Ben Cox, Dillon Pennington, Ben Dwarshuis, Ed Barnard, Daryl Mitchell, Charlie Morris, Brett D Oliveira, Ross Whiteley
After starting the season with 5 straight losses, it looked as if the Leicestershire Foxes will be struggling all the way through this time. But they have affected a mini turnaround by winning 3 games in a row and look to be peaking at the right time. They have beaten Northamptonshire (by 34 runs), Derbyshire (by 42 runs), and Yorkshire (by 34 runs) in their last three matches.
This turnaround has mainly been helped by their batting. In their last game against Yorkshire, Leicestershire posted a formidable 207-3 on the board courtesy of a stunning 99* off 55 balls by Arron Lilley and a terrific knock of 40 off 22 balls by captain Colin Ackermann. Lilley (248 runs at a strike rate of 153), along with openers Josh Inglis (285 runs at 172) and Scott Steel (244 runs at 121) are proving to be a formidable top three for Leicestershire. Ackermann too (196 runs at 141) is proving to be great down the order.
On the bowling front, seamer Naveen-ul-Haq (14 wickets at an economy of 8.85) has been the leader of the pack while Ackermann (9 wickets at 7.92) is also doing a good job at the start. Left-arm orthodox spinner Callum Parkinson, who had figures of 4-35 in the match against Yorkshire, has been pretty effective as well and has 11 wickets at a healthy 7.62.
Scott Steel, Josh Inglis (wk), Arron Lilley, Colin Ackermann (c), Rishi Patel, Lewis Hill, Ben Mike, Callum Parkinson, Louis Kimber, Naveen-ul-Haq, Gavin Griffiths
Naveen-ul-Haq, Gavin Griffiths, Callum Parkinson, Lewis Hill, Colin Ackermann, Scott Steel, Josh Inglis, Ben Mike, Louis Kimber, Arron Lilley, Rishi Patel
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||24||0 mm.||5.58 k/h||From: SSW||20%|
|03h||23||0 mm.||4.82 k/h||From: SSW||46%|
|06h||22||0 mm.||4.38 k/h||From: SW||73%|
|09h||20||0 mm.||4.26 k/h||From: SW||88%|
|12h||23||0 mm.||5.24 k/h||From: SW||71%|
|15h||29||0 mm.||5.99 k/h||From: SW||19%|
|18h||32||0 mm.||5.97 k/h||From: SW||23%|
|21h||30||0 mm.||5.9 k/h||From: SSW||90%|
The County Ground in Worcester is a pretty good T20 wicket. Runs are on offer for the batsmen and the ball comes on nicely to the bat consistently. Medium pacers and fast bowlers go for runs here and have an economy in excess of 8.5. Spinners will get some help during the middle overs.
Conditions are going to be humid in Worcester but there are no chances of rain, thankfully.
The average first innings score at New Road in the T20 Blast is 172. The average first innings winning score here is 190. The highest total on the venue is 229-4 by Lancashire against Worcestershire in 2014. More recently, Yorkshire amassed 216-6 here against Worcestershire in the current T20 Blast season.
60% of the games at County Ground in T20s have been won by the teams chasing. So the captain winning the toss is likely to bat second.
In the last 4 completed games between the Worcestershire Rapids and Leicestershire Foxes, Leics have won 3 matches while Worcs have won just 1. While Worcestershire is a little ahead of Leicestershire in the points table currently, they aren’t in the greatest of form. The Leics, on the other hand, are on a sudden winning spree and look good to maintain that momentum. Their batting is particularly looking really strong, which might prove to be the difference in the outcome of this match.
Back Leicestershire to win this clash.