NatWest t20 Blast 2014




The 2014 NatWest t20 Blast got underway on May 16th and it looks set to be a thrilling cricket tournament if the first round of fixtures is anything to go by. Making an excellent start to their t20 campaign were the Sussex Sharks who secured victories over both Surrey and the Middlesex Panthers. They now sit top of the South Division table with four points and will be keen to build on those results this weekend and make a sustained push for an all important top four finish to make sure of reaching the knockout phase. Sussex are the oldest of the 18 major county clubs and have already achieved a Twenty20 Cup victory in 2009. They are due to face Hampshire this coming Friday with James Adams’ men looking to get off the mark following a defeat in their opening match.

NatWest t20 Blast 2014

NatWest t20 Blast 2014

Until this year, the competition had been known as the Friends Life t20 but the NatWest t20 Blast has replaced that event which ran from 2010 to 2013. The NatWest Blast has retained the format of the Friends Life competition, with eighteen counties split into two groups of nine, with a North and South Division. A round robin format is used where each team will play six other sides in their division both home and away, with the two remaining sides faced just once. Come the end of these fixtures, the top four sides in each group will progress to a single elimination tournament made up of three rounds. To begin, the winner of each division will face the fourth placed team in the other division at home, while the runner-ups will take on the third place teams, also with home advantage.

Betting on the NatWest t20 Blast is already proving popular and you can get more info on latest cricket odds here by clicking the link. As well as betting on the individual matches, there are also markets on the outright t20 winner and odds on who will come out top in each division. Nottinghamshire are currently favourites to win the title with most firms at odds of around 5/1, while the Sussex Sharks impressive start have seen them cut to best odds of 10/1. Rank outsiders to life the trophy are Derbyshire and Worcestershire, with both sides freely available at the 66/1 mark.

While this is somewhat of a transitional season for t20 domestic cricket, the new t20 Blast competition has really hit the ground running. There are a number of teams in with a shout of winning the tournament which makes for a very interesting and exciting summer of cricket. This style of cricket definitely broadens the appeal of the game and although some purists aren’t keen on the format, it looks set to be around for the foreseeable future. The 2014 NatWest t20 final is due to take place on 23rd August at Edgbaston and cricket fans are sure to be in store for a great climax to the season.

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