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Surrey v Essex Eagles at the Kia Oval
Essex Eagles 186/4 (20.0 overs)
Surrey 167 (19.5 overs)
Essex Eagles won the toss and elected to bat
Essex Eagles won by 19 runs
ESSEX EAGLES recorded only their fourth Vitality Blast T20 victory of the season, largely thanks to a swashbuckling performance with the bat from Ravi Bopara, as Surrey were beaten by 19 runs at the Kia Oval.
Having both considerably underachieving in the shortest form of the game this campaign, the games was portrayed very much as a South Group ‘dead rubber’ by some – Nevertheless, a healthy crowd arrived hoping a victory, coupled with a series of ‘snookers’ elsewhere, might see their respective charges sneak into the top four and unlikely qualification.
And Surrey’s aspirations swiftly rose as Cameron Delport and Adam Wheater found themselves back in the hutch inside thirteen deliveries – Jade Dernbach and Sam Curran the men responsible with the ball as Essex floundered on 10/2.
Tom Westley restored some stability to the Essex top order, reaching 30 before sending an ill-advised reverse-sweep off Gareth Batty directly to Dernbach at backward point.
Ryan ten Doeschate 55 off 44 balls – more than ably assisted by Bopara 70 from 35, a knock which included four 4’s and as may 6’s – troubled the scorers a somewhat further, each hitting half-centuries as part of a notable unbeaten stand of 117, carrying the visitors to a competitive 186/4.
The Surrey response initially stuttered. Jamie Porter did the bulk of the early damage the Leytonstone-born medium-fast man claiming 3/27 from a three-over spell.
Ollie Pope offered the home side hope, reaching 35 and then becoming another victim of a disastrous sweep as Paul Walter snaffled his second wicket of the contest.
Clark carried the fight with a spirited half-century. However, it always looked an impossible task and so it proved. Porter took his tally to 4/38 – Clark the final Surrey wicket to fall. Adam Zampa chipping in with 2/33.
This victory – coming off the back of another at group leaders, Sussex Sharks – might be a case of too little, too late for Essex. However, they return to Vitality Blast T20 action on Friday, August 30, hoping to keep their slender hopes alive when Kent Spitfires are the visitors to The Cloudfm County Ground (7pm).
Surrey: Aaron Finch, Mark Stoneman, Sam Curran, Ollie Pope, Ben Foakes (WK), Will Jacks, Jordan Clark, Ryan Patel, Jade Dernbach (Capt), Gareth Batty, Imran Tahir
Essex Eagles: Tom Westley, Cameron Delport, Adam Wheater (WK), Dan Lawrence, Ryan ten Doeschate, Ravi Bopara, Paul Walter, Simon Harmer (Capt), Mohammad Amir, Adam Zampa, Jamie Porter
Umpires: Ian Gould and Paul Pollard