Match Preview: Essex v Sussex Sharks & Kent Spitfires

Essex v Sussex Sharks | Kent Spitfires v Essex
Vitality Blast
The Cloud County Ground, Chelmsford | The Spitfire Ground, Canterbury
Tuesday 06 June, 7pm | Wednesday 07 June, 6:30pm

Following Sunday narrow defeat to Somerset in Taunton, the Eagles have an opportunity to return to action with a double header, starting with the visit of Sussex Sharks.

Essex will be spurred on after defeating the Sharks 25-runs last week at Hove, which included a special hat-trick from the skipper, Simon Harmer.

Following Tuesday’s match, Essex head on the road for two games in three days with the highly anticipated Battle of the Bridge against Kent Spitfires taking place on Wednesday.


Head Coach Anthony McGrath has named a 14-player squad that will face both Sussex Sharks and Kent Spitfires.

After missing the game against Somerset on Sunday, Feroze Khushi and Dan Lawrence return to the matchday squads. Khushi came through Monday’s Second XI match against Hampshire unscathed following his arm injury against Hampshire Hawks on Friday evening, whilst Dan Lawrence returns from England duty to boost Anthony McGrath’s matchday squad.

Sussex squadKent squad

The Opposition: Sussex Sharks

Captain: Ravi Bopara
Overseas players: Shadab Khan (Pakistan), Nathan McAndrew (Australia)
Finals Day appearances: 5 (2007, 2009, 2012, 2018, 2021)
Titles: 1 (2009)
2022 finish: Group Stage
2022 leading run-scorer: Tom Alsop (318)
2022 leading wicket-taker: Tymal Mills (15)

Key winter moves: Luke Wright’s retirement has left a big hole in the top order, but the Sharks have recruited well from overseas. Nathan McAndrew had a good Big Bash with Sydney Thunder and brings new-ball experience and middle-order hitting potential while the experienced Shadab Khan is a player with vast experience at international level to replace Rashid Khan.

Squad: Ravi Bopara (c), Tom Alsop, Michael Burgess, Tom Clark, James Coles, Henry Crocombe, Tom Haines, Fynn Husdon-Prentice, Dan Ibrahim, Ari Karvelas, Shadab Khan, Nathan McAndrew, Tymal Mills.

The Opposition: Kent Spitfires

Captain: Sam Billings
Overseas players: Kane Richardson (Australia), Wes Agar (Australia)
Finals Day appearances: 4 (2007, 2008, 2009,2021)
Titles: 2 (2007, 2021)
2022 finish: Group Stage
2022 leading run-scorer: Joe Denly (423)
2022 leading wicket-taker: Qais Ahmed & Grant Stewart (14)

Darren Stevens has gone, but the nucleus of the side that won the title in 2021 before tanking a year later is basically intact. Mystery spinner Qais Ahmad was less of a mystery second time out so the Spitfires have gone for Kane Richardson’s proven T20 pedigree. Billings has also been a mainstay in the side this year after spurning the IPL and this match is always an exciting one given the rivalry.

South Group Standings:



Tickets are still available for Tuesday’s match against Sussex Sharks and can be purchased online right now. Tickets are priced from just £28 Adults and £10 Juniors.

How To Watch:

The home match against Sussex Sharks will be available to view via the Essex Matchzone and the Club’s YouTube channel.

Wednesday’s game against Kent Spitfires is live on Sky Sports Cricket & Main Event from 6:15pm, ahead of the 6:30pm start.

Clips, statistics and an interactive scorecard will still be available for both games with full match coverage on the Club’s Twitter and Facebook accounts.