About the Match
Lancashire and Hampshire made it in style to the semifinal grade defeating their opponents by a determined approach to the needs of the day; while the former defended a small total of 137 against Glamorgan successfully, the latter successfully chased a tall target of 198 against the fancied Nottinghamshire. The two teams go head to head on 23rd Aug at Birmingham in the second of the semi-finals of the NatWest T20 Blast 2014. A thorough planning and execution is needed either in defending small targets to deny the opponent any chance of maintaining the run rate or in chasing tall targets; both the strategies were successfully implemented by the winners against formidable opponents. It needs to be seen who will make it to the finals, which is to be played on the same day.
In reaching to the quarter final stage, they proved they were the best in defending, as seven of the 9 wins came while doing so, the lowest being 170 against Glamorgan. They defeated the Division topper Essex twice during league, both while chasing; they have a powerful strength in batting but their bowling is their weakness and this is substantiated by the way they planned the chase of a very tall target of 198 set by Notts in the quarter finals wherein, the run rate required was the same as their highest score in the league stage while defending against Middlesex. Vince was invincible in the task of opening with Carberry and added 70 for the 1st wicket maintaining the run rate of 10. Even after they lost 2 wickets for successive balls at 97, Vince held one end and ensured the run rate required was within control and remained unbeaten with 93 with 11 fours and 4 sixes. Their weakness in bowling was exposed by Notts as they could take only 2 wickets, allowing the Notts batsmen to dominate. They will surely rise above their problems to keep their campaign alive.
Khawaja joined the side too late in the league stage and he played a key role in the quarter finals by making nearly half the total scored by the team. The Glamorgan bowlers were at their best, Wagg and Hogan taking 3 wickets each; opening the attack with Wagg was Salter who accounted for 2 wickets. Still they defended the small total because of their efficiency in bowling with Croft and Smith opening the attack claiming 1 wicket each and Clark accounting for 4 dismissals against the strong batting line up of Glamorgans, who always had the dependable Allenby and Rudolph at their best contributing 38 and 67 respectively, but failed to make the post by just 1 run. The determination and capability to hold the nerve at crunch situations by Lancashire mattered in their narrow win; all their wins in league matches were also while defending and the team is fairly balanced in both batting and bowling, which means that they could be successful irrespective of whether they bat or bowl first.
Both sides have game-changers, who can contribute their best in difficult situations to give their teams the upper hand; however, Lancashire looks better equipped to win the match here.
Lancashire, 2.10 @ Bet365