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Vitality Blast T20 Cricket Previews, Predictions & Betting Tips
Vitality Blast T20 Cricket
One of the first to embrace T20 cricket, England’s domestic Twenty20 tournament has gone through a lot of changes since its inception. Established and managed by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), the Vitality Blast is one of the more prestigious T20 leagues around the world.
When the Benson & Hedges Cup ended in 2002 the ECB wanted another ODI competition to take its place. To address the dwindling crowds and reduced sponsorship, the Twenty20 Cup was started with an eye on catching the younger generation.
The first Twenty20 Cup was played in 2003 with the slogan “I don’t like cricket, I love it”.
Over the years the competition has been known by various names due to commercial sponsorships. It was called the Friend Provident T20 and Friends Life T20 from 2010 to 2013, from 2014 until 2017 it was called the Natwest T20 Blast.
From 2018, the competition will be sponsored by Vitality and will be known as the ‘Vitality Blast’.
The format is quite unique because it accommodates the 18 first-class counties in two geographical divisions. The matches are played in July and August, in sync with the children's summer holiday schedule.
During the group stage, each club plays six of the other sides in the same division twice – once at home and once away. They play the remaining two sides only once, for a total of 14 matches for each club.
The top four sides in each division will then qualify for the playoff stage. The quarterfinals will then leave four teams in the competition, who qualify for the ‘finals day’.
The semi-finals and the final are played on one ‘finals day’ in September. The 2018 edition finals day will be held at Edgbaston.
- Derbyshire Falcons
- Durham Jets
- Lancashire Lightning
- Leicestershire Foxes
- Northamptonshire Steelbacks
- Notts Outlaws
- Birmingham Bears
- Worcestershire Rapids
- Yorkshire Vikings
- Essex Eagles
- Kent Spitfires
- Sussex Sharks
Teams receive two points for a win and one point for a tie or an abandoned match. Within the groups, the teams are ranked on the basis of total points and run rate.
Each team has signed two overseas players for the 2018 edition with some prominent T20 specialists making their way to England.
The North Group will feature names like Imran Tahir (Durham Jets), Mohammad Nabi (Leicestershire Foxes), Dan Christian (Notts Outlaws), Travis Head (Worcestershire Rapids), and Kane Williamson (Yorkshire Vikings).
The South Group has players like Adam Zampa (Essex Eagles), Usman Khawaja (Glamorgan), Andrew Tye (Gloucestershire), Mujeeb Ur Rahman (Hampshire Royals), Carlos Brathwaite (Kent Spitfires), Dwayne Bravo (Middlesex) and Aaron Finch (Surrey). Of course, the headline addition has been by the Sussex Sharks who have gone for Rashid Khan.
Notts Outlaws are the defending Champions, while Northants Steelbacks have two titles and one final appearance in the last five years.
Recent Vitality Blast T20 Winners & Runners Up
|2017||Notts Outlaws||Birmingham Bears|
|2016||Northants Steelbacks||Durham Jets|
|2015||Lancashire Lightning||Northants Steelbacks|
|2014||Birmingham Bears||Lancashire Lightning|
|2012||Hampshire Royals||Yorkshire Carnegie|
|2009||Sussex Sharks||Somerset Sabres|
|2008||Middlesex Crusaders||Kent Spitfires|
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