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Warwickshire started off the tournament in a brilliant fashion by registering a win against defending champions, Nottinghamshire, but have managed to register only one win since then. They are lined up to take on Leicestershire Foxes in their next game which is to be played at Grace Road, Leicester. The Foxes are just one spot above Birmingham Bears with six points in seven matches. Both the teams have a tough road ahead and a win here would certainly make their path to the quarterfinals a little easier.
Around a week ago, the Foxes were sitting in a comfortable position with a win over Nottinghamshire. However, a couple of losses in back to back games has put them in a spot of bother. They lost their last match, against Yorkshire, by a considerably big margin, which could hamper them should it come to net run rate as far as qualification for the playoffs is concerned.
Leicestershire started off well with the ball as Mohammad Nabi got rid of dangerous Adam Lyth in the second over of the match. However, their bowlers failed to pick wickets or stop the run-flow allowed Yorkshire to put up a massive total on the board. Barring Ben Raine, all their bowlers picked up a wicket each, but none of them was able to put up enough pressure to induce a mistake from the Kiwi captain.
Leicestershire's chase was all but over inside the powerplay. They were reduced to 49 for 5 as all their batsmen succumbed to scoreboard pressure. Cameron Delport scored 20 off just 8 delivers and Dexter scored 20 off 17. No useful contribution from anyone else in the batting department saw them eventually fell short of the target by 60 runs.
C Delport, Neil Dexter, Mark Cosgrove, Ben Raine, Colin Ackermann, Mohammad Nabi, Ateeq Javid, Ned Eckersley, Zak Chappell, Callum Parkinson, Mohammad Abbas.
Just like Leicestershire, Birmingham's campaign has only gone downhill since the first few matches of the tournament. Another thing that is similar between the two sides is that both the teams lost their last game to Yorkshire.
Chasing a total of tall-order, Birmingham Bears could only score 176 and lost the match by 22 runs, D/L method. Although their bowlers kept chipping away with the wickets, they absolutely failed to keep the run-rate down as Yorkshire cruised to a total of 226. Grant Elliot was Warwickshire's most successful bowler as he picked two wickets for 34 in his three overs.
Ed Pollock and Ian Bell provided Birmingham with a steady start before the former perished for a personal score of 22. Adam Hose and Colin de Grandhomme did manage to hit some lusty blows, but the overall strike rate of Ian Bell and Adam Hose was way below what was required due to which they fell short of the target.
Ed Pollock, Ian Bell, Sam Hain, Adam Hose, Colin de Grandhomme, Grant Elliott, Aaron Thomason, Tim Ambrose, CR Woakes, Jeetan Patel, Olly Stone.
Both Leicestershire and Warwickshire are in similar kind of situations with a win equally important for both the sides. A win will not only keep them alive in the tournament but could also be a morale-booster, especially after a lean period both sides have had. Leicestershire won the match by 100 runs when the two teams met last time in the tournament. They appear to have a better-balanced team on paper and go in as favorites to win this important home encounter.