About the Match
Essex and Hampshire will face off in the upcoming NatWest T20 league match on 26th June at County Ground, Chelmsford. Both teams are amongst the top three in the South Group and have the same number of points; Essex has 10 points after 10 matches and winning 5 while Hampshire played 8 matches and won 5 to accumulate 10 points. Earlier when the two sides met, Hampshire defeated Essex by 17 runs on May 15th at The Rose Bowl, Southampton and both teams will do their best to clinch the upcoming game on Friday.
Essex won their fifth match against Glamorgan by 16 runs after powering to 187 runs batting first and then bowling out Glamorgan for 171. Ravi Bopara blasted his third fifty of the event along with grasping 3 important wickets while Nick Brown scored 38 off 21 balls and Graham Napier contributed 27 runs from just 7 balls helping Essex to set a high total on board. Bowlers Shaun Tait scalped 3 for 33 while Reece Topley took 2 wickets. In their match against Kent they lost the contest by 6 wickets; Mark Pettini top-scored with 56 off 45 balls while Ravi Bopara scored 31 off 23 but that was not enough to beat Kent. The bowlers also failed to take wickets at regular intervals; however, the team has a strong batting line-up with players like Ravi Bopara, Mark Pettini, Jesse Ryder, Nick Brown, Tom Westley and Ryan Ten Doeschate who are in good form and bring the skills and motivation to win the upcoming match.
Hampshire lost their previous game against Sussex by a margin of seven wickets after failing to defend the modest total of 157 runs; James Vince posted 41 off just 21 while Owais Shah scored 36 off 26 and Adam Wheater scored 26 runs. On the bowling front, Chris Wood and Gareth Berg took 3 wickets between them but the other bowlers couldn’t restrict Sussex from reaching the target. Previously, Hampshire won the 7th match against Kent by a whopping 6 wickets after chasing a massive target of 184 successfully; Vince’s unbeaten 99 off 57 deliveries and a good contribution by Sean Ervine’s 37 off 16 balls helped the team win the match. Fidel Edwards and Yasir Arafat scalped 2 wickets each earlier. Overall, they have strong contenders in Vince, Owais Shah and Adam Wheater who have performed well in the last match whereas Michael Carberry, Sean Ervine and Jimmy Adams have been dependable with the bat. Yasir Arafat and Chris Wood are their main strike bowlers with 10 wickets each so far while Will Smith, Gareth Berg and Danny Briggs are bowling excellently to match the tempo of the team. Overall, they have the talent and necessary fire-power to defeat any team and win more matches to move up the ladder.
Essex has a good mix of match-winners and experienced players, who can come up with another victory over Hampshire in the upcoming match. Hampshire on the other hand are ruthless when it comes to overcoming challenges and move towards victory; although it could go down to the wire, we feel that going by their recent form, Hampshire clearly go in as favorites to win the match.