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Twenty20 - Cricket: - Five of the Blast

The final group stage games of this season's T20 Blast take place over the weekend, with several teams still battling it out to make the quarter-finals.

We've picked out our best five matches to look out for, as the sides look to keep alive their hopes of reaching Finals Day - which this year takes place at Edgbaston on 16th July.

WhatLancashire Lightning v Birmingham Bears
WhereEmirates Old Trafford
WhenSunday 3rd July - 18:30
How to watchSky Sports Cricket
OddsLancashire 4/6, Birmingham 6/5

The standout game of the weekend sees the top two in the North go head-to-head, as Lancashire play host to Birmingham at Old Trafford.

The Bears have already qualified for the quarter-finals but Lancashire need a win to make sure of making the knockout stages, in what has been a very competitive group.

Despite having new England white-ball captain Jos Buttler back in their ranks, the Lightning suffered a shock 29-run defeat to bottom-of-the-table Worcestershire on Friday night.

At the same time, Birmingham secured an impressive win at Headingley over Yorkshire, with opener Paul Stirling smashing 81 off just 41 deliveries.

WhatEssex Eagles v Glamorgan
WhereCounty Ground, Chelmsford
WhenSaturday 2nd July - 18:30
How to watchSky Sports Cricket
OddsEssex 8/13, Glamorgan 13/10

Saturday's only match sees third face sixth in the South group, as Essex look to claim second spot having already made it to the quarter-finals.

Half-centuries for both Adam Rossington and captain Tom Westley helped the Eagles to a 28-run success over Sussex on Friday, while Simon Harmer took 3-18 with the ball.

Glamorgan haven't had a T20 match since 24th June and their hopes of qualifying have disappeared ahead of their final fixture at Chelmsford.

Sam Northeast has been their standout batter during this year's Blast, smashing 380 runs in 12 matches and averaging 42.22.

WhatLeicestershire Foxes v Yorkshire Vikings
WhereCounty Ground, Leicester
WhenSunday 3rd July - 14:30
How to watchECB Website
OddsLeicestershire 11/8, Yorkshire 4/7

Both Leicestershire and Yorkshire have chances of making the quarter-finals, ahead of their final group match at the County Ground.

It's the visitors who hold the advantage, with the Vikings sat in fourth - two places and one point ahead of their opponents on Sunday.

Despite making over 200 for the fifth time in this year's tournament, Yorkshire slipped to what could be a costly defeat at Birmingham on Friday.

The Foxes also scored 200+ and eventually won a tight encounter with Northamptonshire to keep alive their hopes of winning a fourth T20 Blast title - their last success came back in 2011.

WhatSomerset v Surrey
WhereCounty Ground, Taunton
WhenSunday 3rd July - 18:30
How to watchECB Website
OddsSomerset 11/10, Surrey 8/11

The top two in the South meet at Taunton with qualification already secured and Surrey having sealed top spot, after winning 10 of their 13 matches to date.

Surrey are seeking a second T20 Blast title, after winning the inaugural tournament in 2003, and sent out a warning to the rest of the competition by comfortably chasing down 191 with nine balls to spare as they beat Kent on Friday.

Meanwhile, Somerset made it back-to-back wins with a two-wicket victory over Middlesex and would make a statement of intent if they can defeat Surrey.

These two teams met at the Oval in late June and it was Surrey that won by three wickets, with opener Will Jacks top scoring with an unbeaten 66 off 58 balls.

WhatSussex Sharks v Hampshire Hawks
WhereCounty Ground, Hove
WhenSunday 3rd July - 18:30
How to watchECB Website
OddsSussex 11/10, Hampshire 8/11

Hampshire look like serious challengers for the T20 title this season, securing their eighth win in nine games on Friday, with a 15-run win over Gloucestershire.

In James Vince, the Hawks have the leading scorer in the competition with the England international smashing 557 runs in 12 matches and averaging 55.70.

They will expect to go into the quarter-finals with another victory under their belt, as Sussex have won just four of their 13 group games.

Friday's defeat to Essex summed up their campaign, falling well short of their 198 target and eventually losing by 28 runs.

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