Durham and the Sky TV Cameras are visiting the 3aaa County Ground tonight, with Derbyshire looking for a victory that will push them towards the precipice of the quarter finals for the first time since 2005.
The match for Durham is a dead rubber, with them sitting bottom of the North Group on 2 points following their points deduction at the start of the season for the financial matters last season, meaning they are playing for nothing but pride.
Conversely, Derbyshire though find themselves in fifth on 13 points but with two games in hand over the sides above them. A victory will see them climb to second in the table and virtually guaranteed a quarter final place.
Last time out Derbyshire lost to the table toppers Nottinghamshire, but they will be looking to put that behind them and get back to winning ways with a move back into the quarter final spots. Before that they beat Leicestershire comfortably, and they will be hoping for a repeat of that tonight.
Durham also lost last time out and won the time before that, and they will also be hoping to get back to winning ways, although with nothing to play for Derbyshire’s desire for victory should be stronger.
The bookies make Derbyshire clear favourites and it’s clear to see why. The weather looks set fair and Derbyshire have only lost once at home this season. That’s a record they will be looking to keep intact.
When Derbyshire started this campaign not many would’ve put four day skipper Billy Godleman in their starting eleven. With a reputation for steady and safe scoring in this competition, however, Billy the sensible has become “Billy the Basher” and has given the side real impetus at the top of the order – impetus that every side needs.
If Godleman can fire as he has done throughout the campaign, then Derbyshire’s chances of victory will be greatly enhanced. With Wilson away as well, Godleman’s captaincy experience will be invaluable to stand in skipper Smit.
Durham started the campaign poorly to say the least, but this was without overseas star Tom Latham. Since Latham has come into the side the Jets’ fortunes have improved, having only lost one of the games he has played. When Latham scored runs for the Jets, they have won, scoring 62 in the victory over Worcestershire. If Latham can repeat this tonight then Durham’s chances will improve no end.
Derbyshire will be without their regular T20 captain Gary Wilson, who is away on international duty with Ireland, so Daryn Smit takes over the reigns and will also continue to keep wicket. The Falcons do, however, have Matt Crictchley back, who has had an enforced absence since being struck on the helmet against Leicestershire, and his clean hitting at the top of the order will be welcomed
Durham are yet to announce their squad for the game, however they will be hoping for consistency in selection to enable their recent improvement in form in this competition, having Won and Drawn one of their last three matches. They will be looking for Tom Latham and the evergreen Paul Collingwood as the experience and quality in their squad to push for victory.
Derbyshire Falcons squad: D Smit (c, wk), C Brodrick, G Cork, B Cotton, M Critchley, B Godleman, M Henry, A Hughes, W Madsen, T Milnes, L Reece, I Tahir, H Viljoen, T Wood
Durham Jets squad: TBA
Derbyshire Falcons: LWWAWL
Durham Jets: LWDLWL
Weather and conditions
The forecast is good for Derby this evening, with sunshine predicted for the entirety of the game. The pitches at Derby so far this year have provided runs, have played true and have provided entertaining cricket. The game last week at the 3aaa County Ground against the West Indies also provided plenty of runs, and I would imagine this will continue this evening.
Date: 15th August 2017
Ground: 3aaa County Ground, Derby
Umpires: Peter Hartley and Martin Saggers
Odds (SkyBet): Derbyshire 1/2, Durham 13/8