About the Match
Gloucestershire has just 8 points from 12 matches and is facing Essex, the South Division leaders with 20 points from 10 wins of the 11 matches played so far, on 20th July at Cheltanham. Gloucs and Essex fought against each other on 13th June and it ended with a thumping win for Essex with 8 wickets and 9 balls to spare. Essex has grown strength to strength after that and Gloucs have not been able to establish their credibility to give a forceful reply to Essex.
Gloucestershire could not defend a good score of 162 for 6 against Essex on 13th June because their bowlers could not make any dent on the strong batting line up of the opponents. Pettini and Ryder gave a good opening stand of 30 runs in just 4.1 overs; Westley and Bopara joined at 51 for 2 and went on with an unbeaten stand of 112 runs to win the match by 8 wickets with 9 balls to spare. None of the Gloucs’ bowlers could be effective in creating any visible impact on Essex. The recent loss to Surrey by 5 runs is a proof of their collective failure and inability to have a planned chase of a target; this loss was a follow up of their loss to Somerset on 11th July where they failed to capitalize on a good opening stand of 89 runs by Gidman and Klinger and the team failed to chase a target of 175 set by Somerset. Again, it was the failure of their bowlers to be effective in their bowling capabilities to contain the opposing batsmen. They have to work hard and plan well to have any impact on the robust Essex team if they want to register a win against them and keep their campaign alive.
They are a well-knit team with a good line-up of batsmen like Pettini, Ryder, Westley and Bopara who have been consistent in their efforts to win matches against most of the teams. Their bowlers Masters, Topley, Bopara, Mills and Phillips have also been supporting each other and making impact on the opponents consistently. Their win against Kent on 12th July by a big margin of 63 runs in which Westley with a century joined hands with Bopara, after early departure of openers Pettini and Ryder with just 2 runs on board, is a proof of their resilience in batting. Ryder came good with 5 wickets in routing the Kents for just 146 in 15.5 overs to win the game. They defeated the strong Surrey on 4th July also by a thumping margin of 5 wickets with 9 balls to spare again by chasing 165, in which after the fall of Ryder with just 1 run on board, Westley, Bopara and Doeschate took the score to the winning post comfortably in the 19th over. They are capable of repeating their win against Gloucs in the reverse encounter now.
Though the Gloucs will try to redeem themselves with a good performance here, Essex is strong and capable to win the match comfortably.
Essex Eagles, 1.40 @ Titan Bet