About the Match
It has all come down to the final round of matches in the NatWest T20 Blast 2017 where most of the times still have their fate in their own hands. The final group match for both Northamptonshire and Derbyshire is vitally important since the winner will all but certainly make to the final four.
The Steelbacks were blown away by Yorkshire in the last match as Adam Lyth scored an unbelievable 161 off just 73 deliveries. A record breaking total of 260 was never realistically going to be chased down and even though Levi played a valiant inning, Northants eventually collapsed to 136 all out.
None of the bowlers escaped the last match with any figures to write home about but Kleinveldt with 32 runs off his 4 overs was the best by far. Sanderson and Gleeson had absolute horror figures for the match and will need to pick themselves up quickly in time for this match.
One bad match, however, does not change the fact that this Northants bowling lineup has been performing pretty consistently for them this season.
The real strength of this team is their batting lineup. Richard Levi continues to be in excellent form and will be the one wicket that Durham will want at the earliest. His innings of 65 off 32 balls was brutal and showed what he is capable of in the powerplay overs.
Rossington, Duckett, and Wakely have all also scored plenty of runs this season providing plenty of ammunition for the Steelbacks to rely on. We believe the Steelbacks are a bat first team and doing so will give them a huge advantage.
Having been knocked out of the competition, this match is final chance for the Durham Jets to make some waves as they bow out. A poor start in the last match cost them momentum and even though Poynter played an excellent inning down the order, their total of 161 was average at best.
Durham has Keaton Jennings and Tom Latham at the top of the order, two quality international players but both of whom have not quite cracked the T20 code quite yet.
They are followed by Clark, Richardon, Burnham and Coughin. This is a lineup that can rustle up runs between them but is unlikely to have one player come out and dominate the match completely. Getting runs has been a problem for Durham throughout this season and with their highest scorer Paul Collingwood not being available, we don’t see them changing things in this match either.
Paul Coughlin did manage to pick 4 wickets, a personal best, in the last match but that was not enough to mask the obvious weaknesses in their bowling attack. The likes of Rushworth, Weighall, and Arshad are going to find it very difficult to stop the strong Northants batting.
Durham is one of the weakest teams in this competition and even though they are capable of springing a surprise, we would not bet on it happening without Paul Collingwood.
Pitch and Conditions
There is rain predicted for match day but the outlook increases near the time the match is about to start. A lot of cloud cover and some potential rain interruptions could make this match an extremely tense affair. The pitch at Northampton is usually absolutely brilliant for batting and we expect the same in this match.
Northamptonshire to wi