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|Colin de Grandhomme||49||28||1||5||175.00|
|Jacob Daniel Libby||21||16||2||0||131.25|
Both Birmingham Bears and Nottinghamshire are coming off from losses in their respective games and are in similar sort of positions, as far as the points table is concerned. They are next to each other with Nottinghamshire at sixth spot and Bears at the seventh. They are set to see each other on 9th August 2018 which at Edgbaston Cricket Ground. Both sides have failed to live up to their performance in the previous edition of T20 Blast and would need to do something magical so as to make it to the top-four from here.
The return of Chris Woakes to the Bears' lineup immediately returned fruitful rewards as he scored a match-winning fifty, 57 from 23 deliveries, to take them to a convincing total against Northamptonshire. However, he will be absent for their following T20, against Nottinghamshire, due to his call-up to the England squad for the upcoming test against India.
The Bears decided to bat first after winning the toss, but the decision to bat first appeared wrong as they lost Ed Pollock and Adam Hose in the powerplay overs without much on the board. Ian Bell continued his solid form with the bat as he added 64 runs for the third wicket with Sam Hain. Both of them departed in the space of three balls thereafter. The possibility of getting to even 170 appeared bleak with them struggling at 128 for 5 before Chris Woakes late order blitz took them to 187.
Bowling came good for the Bears as they continued to chip away at the wickets and restricted Northamptonshire to 170 despite Joshua Cobb's brilliant on. Olly Stone was superb upfront as he dismissed Ben Duckett for just two. Grant Elliot picked up the wicket of Ricardo Vasconcelos and then rest of the order perished like a pack of cards. Stone gave away only seven runs off his last over out of 27 required taking Bears to a much-needed win.
Ed Pollock, Ian Bell, Adam Hose, Sam Hain, Colin de Grandhomme, Grant Elliott, Tim Ambrose, Jeetan Patel, Aaron Thomason, Josh Poysden, Oliver Hannon-Dalby.
The Outlaws were punished mercilessly by Callum Ferguson in their last game as they lost it by a big margin of 72 runs. Nottinghamshire's batting was bolstered by the return of Alex Hales, who played a vital role in their last year's title win. Hales was sent back quickly by Wayne Parnell and the rest of their batsmen failed to score quickly as the required run rate soon went out of reach.
Although Steven Mullaney played a valiant knock of 55 runs, his schoolboy error cost him is wickets and Nottinghamshire's performance with the bat nosedived. Their last five batsmen were dismissed in the space of just 18 deliveries.
Bowling-wise, there wasn't much their bowlers could have done with Ferguson on a song. Moeen Ali, too, was brutal in his 36-ball 65-run knock. He smashed Samit Patel for 19 in one of the overs to kick-start Worcestershire's onslaught. Nottinghamshire gave away too many runs with the ball and their batsmen just lacked the responsibility and threw away their wickets as Notts succumbed to a 72-run defeat.
Riki Wessels, AD Hales, Tom Moores, Steven Mullaney, DT Christian, SR Patel, Billy Root, Jake Libby, Luke Fletcher, IS Sodhi, Harry Gurney.
It could be a repeat of last year's final or this year's opening encounter with the same teams taking on each other. It would be interesting to see which way it goes. Nottinghamshire's batting is a little over-reliant on Dan Christian's late-order hitting. The Bears, on the other hand, looked good in their last match with runs from Ian Bell and Sam Hain. We expect it to be another nail-biting encounter and the home team, Birmingham, are better placed to win this upcoming match.
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