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Things are pretty tight in the North Group of Vitality T20 league with just three points between the third placed and seventh-placed team. Derbyshire are placed at sixth in the points table have are well in the hunt to make it to the playoffs. Taking on them in their next game are Leicestershire, who would have to do really well from here to qualify. The match is set to be played at County Ground, Derby on 11th August 2018. We are into the stage where every game can be the difference between a playoff berth and missing out on it and considering the stakes involved, expect the upcoming game to be a hard-fought encounter.
After back to back losses against Northants and Worcestershire respectively, Derbyshire may have lost some momentum, they'd not press the panic button just yet. With five wins in twelve matches, they're just a couple of wins away from getting into the top four, provided the other results go in their favor. They tried for a win desperately against Worcestershire, but poor batting on a no-so-good batting surface led them to a 16-run defeat.
Bowling first after losing the toss, their bowlers were disciplined throughout the innings with Wahab Riaz, Ravi Rampaul, and Hardus Viljoen all being impressive up front. The trio of the pace bowlers was responsible for most of the damage as the Falcons restricted Worcestershire rapid for a meager total of 137 which should have been a walk in the park for their batsmen, instead it proved otherwise.
A good start for Derbyshire would have knocked the Rapids out of the game, but it was not to be as Ben Slater was trapped in front in the first over of the innings by Luke Wood. Wahab Riaz, Calum Macleod, and Madsen soon followed him back to the pavilion as the visitors found themselves struggling at 28 for four in seventh over. Irish skipper Gary Wilson and Billy Goldeman reconstructed their innings with a well-knit partnership of 53, but the task proved to be too steep for them after the sluggish start as the Falcons lost the match by just 16 runs.
BA Godleman, Henry Nicholls, Calum MacLeod, WL Madsen, GC Wilson, MJJ Critchley, Safyaan Sharif, AL Hughes, Hardus Viljoen, Lockie Ferguson, Ravi Rampaul.
Leicestershire have had an on-off kind of tournament which has been off more often than not. Durham were too good for them in their last completed game as they overcame the Foxes by 14 runs at Emirates Riverside. Barring Colin Ackermann, no batsman could adapt to the slowness of the pitch as they were reduced to 22 for 4 in the fifth over of their innings.
Despite skipper's excellent effort of 74 with good support from Ned Eckersley, the task proved to be too big and they eventually fell short of the target. Not unlike Derbyshire, their opponents in the upcoming game, Derbyshire had a game scheduled against Worcestershire which was in progress at the time of writing.
Leicestershire scored 155 for the loss of 9 wickets in their allotted 20 overs riding on little cameos from everyone in their middle order. There was a change in their opening combination with Swindells being given a go at the top, but it didn't change anything for them. They were two down for six runs before Ben Raine, Mark Cosgrove, Colin Ackermann, and Mohammad Nabi revived them with small but useful cameos. They needed to defend 50 off the final five overs with Ross Whiteley and Callum Ferguson batting for Worcestershire.
Neil Dexter, Mark Cosgrove, Ben Raine, Colin Ackermann, Ateeq Javid, Mohammad Nabi, Ned Eckersley, Harry Swindells, Zak Chappell, Callum Parkinson, Gavin Griffiths.
Worcestershire pummeled Derbyshire in their last game and Leicestershire appeared to be having similar fate at the time of writing. Considering the chances of qualification for the next round at stake, both the teams will are expected to push hard coming into the next round. Derbyshire's campaign has been a lot about momentum this year which they are lacking at the moment. Their batsmen have looked to be out of sorts in the last couple of game which placed Leicestershire at a better position to finish ahead in the upcoming encounter.