Vitality Blast T20: Leics, Yorks eyeing for consistency
Familiarity makes Leicestershire favourites
Regardless of how they are placed as teams, Yorkshire and Leicestershire always face-off in intensely competitive games. Their recent head-to-head record is proof of that and more of the same is expected when the two teams lock horns in this fixture.
Both teams have batting units that are in form, but have been outclassed by the opposition’s batsmen. The bowling is so-so and efficient in parts. This similarity in strengths and weaknesses is probably why their duels produce tight finishes. Yorkshire were guilty of throwing away a lovely platform with the bat against the Notts, and that ultimately cost them the game.
Leicestershire on the other hand produced a top all-round effort to down Durham and are brimming with confidence coming into this game. In terms of overall balance, they seem to be the slightly better side but again, not by a lot. The Yorks, depleted as they are, still have enough resources in the bank to stretch the Leics in this encounter.
Despite losing a clump of key players to national duties, Yorks have done well with the bat and that’s due to the form Joe Root has shown in the two completed games. His fifties have given the team solidity and allowed the powerhitters to flourish from the other end. Adam Lyth in particular has been extremely destructive and the duo’s antics have ensured that skipper Tom Kohler-Cadmore’s lack of runs hasn’t been felt. The captain would be keen to fire and given how he operates, it should only be a matter of time.
Yorkshire still need to sort out their middle and lower-order worries though. A tragic collapse hurt them badly against the Notts, as a potential total of 210-220 eventually ended as 190 which isn’t bad but just not good enough on a belter against that kind of a batting unit. Will Fraine has shown promise as a hitter in the two games but there needs to be more from the others in the lower middle order. On extremely batting-friendly pitches, these small margins can prove decisive to the final outcome.
The bowling has concerns too but they aren’t too difficult at least for now. It’s the batting that needs to be more rounded in terms of depth and contributions. There could be a case to promote Jonathan Tattersall higher in the order but again, it boils down to the match situation as he is more suited to an innings-builder role that accellerates gradually than tonking it from the first ball.
A Lyth, T Kohler-Cadmore(c), J Root, H Brook, W Fraine, J Tattersall(wk), J Thompson, M Fisher, G Hill, M Pillans, J Poysden
It was a near-perfect game for them against Durham. The batsmen did their job, posting a healthy total on a slightly sluggish surface.
Delany and Aaron Lilley were the stars with rapid 60-plus scores, the former also chipping in with effective leg-spin later on in the game. Once a solid total was posted, Durham were never allowed to break free in the run chase as wickets kept falling from the outset. All the Leicestershire bowlers put in impressive performances, none more than their premier weapon in Callum Parkinson who scalped three, opening the bowling.
Eventually, it was a comfortable win for Leicestershire but they’ll know that there is room for improvement, especially with the middle order not so flawless. The bowling seems to be in good rhythm and that’s always a great thing to have in a tournament. Skipper Colin Ackermann has had a relatively quiet tournament so far and the Leics would dearly wish their skipper to also join the party as that would further strengthen the team’s chances.
G Delany, H Dearden, A Lilley, C Ackermann(c), L Hill(wk), T Taylor, B Mike, G Rhodes, C Parkinson, G Griffiths, W Davis
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||13||0 mm.||1.35 k/h||From: SW||95%|
|03h||13||0 mm.||1.49 k/h||From: SSW||99%|
|06h||13||0 mm.||1.96 k/h||From: SSW||92%|
|09h||17||0 mm.||3.45 k/h||From: SSW||61%|
|12h||20||0 mm.||4.98 k/h||From: SSW||54%|
|15h||16||1.13 mm.||4.83 k/h||From: SSW||100%|
|18h||15||0.62 mm.||4.54 k/h||From: SSW||100%|
|21h||15||0.11 mm.||4.34 k/h||From: S||100%|
It’s been a rainy week all over England. Fortunately, this game doesn’t have a rainy forecast although it’s expected to be overcast for a large part of the day.
Also, England weather is hard to predict. Anyway, we should mostly get a game in, a shortened one in the worst case scenario.
Pitches have generally been on the drier side in Headingley with the surface slowing down as the game progresses. The rain could however spice up the deck a bit if and when it arrives.
A colossal venue in terms of history and quality, Headingley is one of England’s premier venues for cricket – both in domestic and international games. It’s been a ground where several heroic and magical deeds have been performed.
Captains might want to bat first, given the slowing nature of the Headingley surface although the overhead conditions and the rain factor could also play on their minds, forcing them to field. Ideally, it’s been a bat-first pitch if not for the rains.
Yorkshire seem an up-and-down kind of side while Leicestershire appear to know their limitations better. We’re backing the latter to come up trumps in this fixture.
Familiarity makes Leicestershire favourites