The fixtures for this season’s Vitality Blast and Royal London Cup have been released.
The Vitality Blast returns to its 14-match group stage format with the traditional North and South groups and will begin on Wednesday 09 June.
As normal, Essex Eagles will feature in the South Group alongside Glamorgan, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Kent Spitfires, Middlesex, Somerset, Surrey and Sussex Sharks. The top four teams will progress to the knockout stages, with Finals Day scheduled to take place on Saturday 18 September at Edgbaston.
Simon Harmer’s side start things off with a trip to The Cooper Associates County Ground to face Somerset, whilst the first match at Chelmsford will see Hampshire as the visitors to The Cloudfm County Ground.
50-over cricket and the Royal London Cup makes a welcome return in 2021, but with the groupings slightly different to normal.
Although there are still two groups of nine teams, the groups aren’t split into North and South and have instead been split into Group A and Group B. Essex Eagles have been drawn in Group A and will be up against Durham, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Kent Spitfires, Lancashire, Middlesex, Sussex Sharks and Worcestershire Rapids.
Tom Westley will skipper the side, having taken over as Club Captain in January 2020. His team will get things started with a match against Hampshire at The Ageas Bowl on Thursday 22 July, whilst the first fixture at The Cloudfm County Ground is on Sunday 25 July against Middlesex.
Like in the Vitality Blast, the top four teams will progress to the knockout stages with the Final itself to be staged at Trent Bridge on Thursday 19 August.
India Set For Chelmsford:
The Club are also pleased to announce that Essex will face India ‘A’ on Sunday 4 – Wednesday 7 July in this year’s Tourist match.
The match will be part of the build-up to India’s five-match Test series against England which gets underway in early August.
Essex Eagles Fixtures: