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We are down to the final part in the league stage of Vitality T20 Blast, and things are looking settled for most of the teams. Lancashire Lightning are currently at the top of the table with 15 points to their name, and their qualification for the playoffs looks almost certain. They are set to host Birmingham Bears in their upcoming fixture, which is to be played at Emirates Old Trafford, Manchester on Friday, 16th August. With eight points to their name, two points shy of the third-placed Nottinghamshire, and a win here will put them back in contention to qualify for the playoffs. It's an all-important game for the Bears, and we expect them to come out all guns blazing.
After conceding their first match of the season, Lancashire Lightning got their act together as they bounced back brilliantly ran past Northamptonshire Steelbacks in their last match. They reasserted their supremacy at the points table and are currently placed at the top of the ladder.
Bowling first, their bowlers made a relatively light work of the Steelbacks' batting as they could score only 157 batting first. With Glenn Maxwell out due to minor hamstring pull, the target seemed tricky at first, but Alex Davies played a brilliant knock as Lancashire overhauled the total with eight wickets in hand. Davies scored 75 off just 58 deliveries.
While Danny Lamb was brought in for Maxwell, he might not have a huge role to play in the upcoming fixture, if Maxwell regains his fitness. Having said that, Lancashire would not want to risk Maxwell with important matches coming up ahead.
Playing 11 not yet available.
With a win in their previous fixture, Birmingham Bears got back to the fold as far as a qualification to the next round. However, they'd have to continue to build on their form in order to have even the minutest of a chance to qualify.
Batting first in their last match, Birmingham Bears scored 179 runs batting first with Adam Hose and Dominic Sibley smashing brilliant half-centuries. Chris Green joined them on short notice, and he's been fabulous so far, continuing with the form he exhibited in Global T20 Canada.
While their batting that did well to take them to a reasonable total, it was their bowling which set up the win for them. In particular, it was Chris Green's bowling which derailed Lightning's chase with a brilliant spell of spin bowling wherein he conceded only 19 runs from his four overs and picked up a wicket in the process.
Playing 11 not yet available.
Check out the Dream11 lineup for the Vitality T20 match which is to be played between Lancashire Lightning and Birmingham Bears
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With every point of massive importance for Birmingham Bears, they'll be hoping that weather doesn't play spoilsport. Bears have been strengthening by the addition of Chris Green to their squad who has already made a massive impact in a short period. Lancashire Lightning have been fabulous in the tournament so far, but they'd be wary of the fact that their only loss has come at the hands of Birmingham Bears. On paper, they are a better side than Bears and playing at home; they are firm favorites to win the upcoming encounter.
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