What Is Vitality Blast?
The Vitality Blast is the domestic T20 competition played by the 18 county teams in England and Wales. The format comprises a North and South group with the top four from each making the Quarter Finals, the Semi Finals and Final are played at one venue on the same day known as ‘Finals Day’.
When Is Vitality Blast Played?
The Vitality Blast is played in every English county season, the current edition started in May 2023, the finals day will take place on July 15th 2023 at Edgbaston.
History of Vitality Blast
In 2003 the ECB launched the World’s first ever professional T20 League, a format that has now spread throughout World and domestic Cricket 20 years on, with the ICC T20 World Cup arguably being one of the most popular tournaments. A shorter format was introduced to try and increase the games popularity, particularly with younger audiences. The most successful teams in the history of the Vitality Blast are Hampshire and Leicestershire who have both won the title on three occasions.
Top Run Scorers In Vitality Blast History
Current Hampshire captain and England cricket team international James Vince recently overtook Luke Wright to become the leading run scorer in the Vitality Blast history. He has scored 5283 runs in the competition at an average of 36.18.
Top Wicket Takers In Vitality Blast History
Another player who has featured for Hampshire left arm spinner Danny Briggs has taken 214 wickets to date, the most in the Vitality Blast by any bowler.
Memorable Games In Vitality Blast
Taunton has always been one of the higher scoring grounds in the Vitality Blast with its good pitches and inviting small boundaries. That was certainly the case in the 2022 Quarter Final when home team Somerset took on Derbyshire. Derbyshire actually won the toss and elected to field, by the halfway stage the match was effectively over as a contest as Somerset smashed a Blast record 265/5. It was carnage for the bowlers as South Africa national cricket team batter Rilee Rossouw made 93 from just 36 balls, and Tom Banton 73 from 41.
Tom Lammoby’s late cameo of 31 from just 9 deliveries rubbed salt into the wound. Derbyshire had no answer to the onslaught conceding 18 sixes, and poor Mattie Mckieranan went for 82 in his four overs, the worst ever figures in the Vitality Blast. The visitors were probably still shell shocked by the time they batted, being dismissed for 74 to lose by a mammoth 191 runs.
Arguably the greatest ever Vitality Blast final also involved Somerset in 2010 when they took on hosts Hampshire at The Rose Bowl. The game ended as a tie, with Hampshire winning the title on the virtue of losing fewer wickets. Somerset made 173/6 with England T20 World Cup winning wicket keeper Craig Kieswetter top scoring with 71, in reply a scrambled leg bye (which was very close to being given LBW) saw Hampshire level things on 173/5 from the last ball of the match. South African Neil Mckenzie top scored with 52.