Vitality T20 Blast 2019 Final, Worcestershire vs Essex Highlights: Essex have won the Vitality Blast final off the last ball. They won by 4 wickets with captain Simon Harmer hitting the winning runs.
The defending champions Worcestershire took on Essex in the final of T20 Blast 2019 at Edgbaston, Birmingham on Monday. Batting first, Worcs posted 145/9 in 20 overs. The pitch assisted the spinners as we witnessed in the semi-final games.
Vitality T20 Blast 2019 Final, Worcestershire vs Essex Highlights:
Harmer smashes the last ball for a four and sprints off in manic celebration. His teammates converge around him. Essex have won their first Blast title. They have won it off the last ball with their captain hitting the winning runs. Essex win by 4 wickets.
6 off 2 required
Harmer again goes for the big shot and gets a double. Six runs needed. 2 balls left. Harmer on strike. Parnell bowls. And it's a four! Sensational from Harmer! Another run off the last ball and they will have pulled off a sensational run chase.
No super over
There is no Super Over rule to decide ties in this tournament. The team which loses the lesser number of wickets will be declared the winner. Which looks likely to be Essex in case of a tie. Singles come off the first two balls! Parnell is on the money! And then there's a double. Still Bopara remains on the non striker's end. 8 needed off 3 balls. Technically, 7 needed off 3 because Essex will win if there is a tie.
Simon Harmer, the captain, joins Bopara in the middle. This has all the ingredients of a classic finish. Essex need 17 runs off 8 balls. Harmer smashes his first ball for four! 13 off 7 needed. Takes a single off the last ball too. 12 needed off the last over then. With Bopara on the non strikers end. Wayne Parnell to bowl. Harmer to face him.
23 needed in 2 overs
Wayne Parnell bowls a very efficient 18th over. It will be him who will bowl the 20th over presumably as well. Bopara and Walter deal in singles and doubles in that over with the field spread out to stop the big runs.
30 needed in 3 overs
This chase is on! Bopara smashes Patrick Brown for a six, his second of the day. Essex need 32 off 20. Walter sees off the rest of the over without trouble to get the strike back to Bopara. It's clear to everyone here that Bopara is the man who must shoulder the burden of these last tense passage of play. Essex need 30 runs off the last 3 overs.
All eyes on Bopara
Ravi Bopara! That is what this match has come down to. He;s done it before, can he do it again and deny Worcs a second successive title? Essex need 39 runs in the last 4 overs.
Essex need 64 runs in 7 overs
A lot of the responsibility will be on Daniel Lawrence to see this chase home for Essex. Bopara can swing a mean bat but Essex would want Bopara to get into the swinging without mercy mode maybe after a couple of overs. He has just played 4 balls as of now. Jinxed it! Lawrence is out! Moeen Ali the man who gets the wicket. This is his second wicket. Essex have lost half their side and suddenly look a little exposed. Essex 83/5 after 13.2 overs
The first six of the innings comes from the new man - Daniel Lawrence. Smashes the 4th ball of his innings straight back past the bowler. But then Wayne Parnell gets the big wicket! That is Parnell's second wicket. Westley goes for a 31-ball 36. Can only manage a top edge to the fielder after having built his innings patiently for a long time. Could this be Worcestershire's chance to get back into the game? Essex 69/3 after 11 overs
Daryll Mitchell gets the breakthrough in his first over. Wheater, trying to play a reverse sweep, is bowled. There have been so many wickets taken by spinners in this manner today. Westley is still there, on 30. Daniel Lawrence joins him. The run rate is just above 6 at the moment but the equation still manageable for the chasing side. Essex 49/2 after 8 overs
Calculated approach from the Essex top order
Tom Westley is playing the role Wessels had in the first innings. There's a very calculated approach about how Essex are going about this chase. Can they keep maintaining this rate? Not too many risks are being taken. Worcs might be missing a wicket taking spinner like Harmer in their ranks. Essex 30/1 after 5 overs
Moeen Ali starts off with the ball
Essex need 146 to win. The chase begins. Moeen gives away just 1 run in the 1st over. Economical bowling par extraordinaire. Cameron Delpot and Tom Westley, the openers, are off to a safe start. They want wickets in hand for the final stage of this chase. ESS 8/0 after 2 overs
2 wickets and 10 runs in last over
Bopara bowls an eventful last over. Two wickets fall and two boundaries in that over. Worcs end their 20 overs at the score of 145/9. Wessels and Moeen Ali the stars with the bat in the 1st innings. Simon Harmer the star with the ball for Essex. Essex need 146 to win in the 2nd innings. On this dustbowl of a pitch, things could get interesting very fast.
Worcs 135/7 after 19 overs
Worcestershire have just lost too many wickets to lose their advantage. Harmer and Daniel Lawrence, the two spinners, the destructors in chief. Could this lower order get the score to 150 or thereabouts in the last over?
Two quick wickets
Wessels is run out! He shall be bitterly disappointed. After getting his heels dug in on this dustbowl of a pitch, he finally loses his wicket after failing to make his ground. Then Mitchell offers a simple catch in the deep. 2 new batsmen now out there for Worcs. They've lost the advantage of the platform laid by their top order (read: Moeen Ali) but they could still make these last 3 overs count. Ross Whiteley can be a clean hitter on his day. Worcs 120/6 after 17 overs
Harmer gets a third
Harmer is on a roll! Gets his third now. Parnell he man to depart. Parnell lbw Harmer - this could easily have been the South African domestic league final! Harmer finishes his four overs with figures of 3/16. Daryl Mitchell joins Wessels. Worcs 98/4 after 14 overs
Battle for control of the middle phase
Lawrence and Harmer, the spinners who have taken the 3 wickets to fall so far, are bowling from either end in this important passage of play. Wessels now has Wayne Parnell for company. There's a strong South African flavour to this passage of play as well. Parnell has gotten off to an aggressive start as he lets Wessels continue playing the role he has been so far. Worcs 89/3 after 12 overs
Almost a hat-trick
Wayne Parnell is struck on the pad by Harmer on the hat-trick ball. Umpire says it's not out. That was almost 3 wickets in 3 balls! What a stunning over by the Essex captain. Worcs 62/3 after 9 overs
2 in 2! Harmer!
Captain gets captain! Excellent catch off his own bowling by Harmer to bring an end to the danger man's innings. Moeen Ali was looking in punishing mode. He goes for a 26-ball 32. And Harmer gets another wicket with the next ball as the balance of the match is tilted in a single over by Harmer. Ben Cox is out for a golden duck. 2 in 2 for Harmer. He is on a hat-trick! Worcs 61/3 after 8.3 overs
Moeen Ali and Ricki Wessels have done brilliantly to set a platform for Worcs after the early wicket of Rutherford. Wessels is playing the role of the sedate partner and Moeen Ali has been playing the role of the aggressor. Worcs 60/1 after 8 overs
Moeen Ali goes big again
There has been a dip in the scoring rate but Moeen Ali is looking to go for the big shot whenever he can. Hacks Bopara for a maximum. Worcs 47/1 after 6 overs
Moeen Ali is in party mode! Hits the first six of the final. And its such a lazy looking shot too. Just lazily flicks one to the leg side and that flies into the crowd. Worcs 36/1 after 4 overs
Worcs 23/1 after 2 overs
The ball is doing a lot but the batsmen seem to be intent on fighting fire with fire. They are swinging at anything short and wide. Moeen Ali has hit three fours already. His strike rate is at 200 at the moment.
Hamish Rutherford and Riki Wessels start off the match for Worcestershire. Daniel Lawrence the bowler. And there's a lot happening in this first over itself. The first ball is a wide. The third ball is hit for a boundary by Rutherford. The fourth ball, Rutherford is bowled. The first wicket falls in the match. Moeen Ali trudges out at No.3.
There is at least one Indian connection in this Vitality Blast - Aron Nijjar from Essex has an Indian father.
Meanwhile, the players have taken the field. We are minutes away from the first ball.
15 minutes to go
The pitch report suggests this will be a low scoring final. 150 the first innings score to target - is the diagnosis from the middle. Both captains will be vital to their team's bowling, going by their figures in the semifinals. Harmer registered figures of 4/19 in the semifinal. Moeen Ali registered figures of 1/13. Drying up runs would be a good ploy in conditions like these.
Worcs aiming for a special feat
Worcestershire are the defending T20 Blast champions. No team has won this tournament in successive years before this. Could the Moeen Ali-led side do what has never been done?
Worcs Playing XI: Riki Wessels, Hamish Rutherford, Moeen Ali(c), Wayne Parnell, Ben Cox(w), Ross Whiteley, Brett DOliveira, Daryl Mitchell, Ed Barnard, Patrick Brown, Charlie Morris
Essex Playing XI: Tom Westley, Cameron Delport, Daniel Lawrence, Ryan ten Doeschate, Ravi Bopara, Adam Wheater(w), Paul Walter, Simon Harmer(c), Aron Nijjar, Aaron Beard, Samuel Cook
Harmer wins toss
Essex captain Simon Harmer wins the toss and says his side will bowl first. Moeen Ali-led Worcestershire to bat first then.
Harmer says, "We're going to have a bowl. We are hoping that dew would come in later. It is a bit of a gamble, but the batters are going to have to deal with it later. All the history tells us that will be a bit of dew around."
"We were going to bowl as well with dew set to come around. The picth does change a bit and we've seen it this year," says Moeen Ali. A lot of thought being put on the dew factor.