Steelbacks 'buzzing' as they claim second straight win to close in on Viality Blast top four

Tom Taylor says the Steelbacks camp is 'buzzing' after their stunning 78-run success at Yorkshire Vikings breathed further life and momentum into their bid to reach the quarter-finals of the Vitality Blast.
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Just two days after seeing off Notts Outlaws by the same margin at the County Ground, Steelbacks travelled to Headingley and produced a brilliant all-round team performance to stun the Vikings.

There were solid efforts with the bat from Justin Broad (47no), Emilio Gay (40), Ricardo Vasconcelos (37) and former Yorkshire skipper David Willey as the Steelbacks posted 180 for six.

Willey, on his first return to Headingley since returning to his hometown club, and Ben Sanderson then both claimed two wickets as the home side were reduced to 22 for four, before Taylor got in on the act to claim a career-best five for 28 in his four overs.

Justin Broad top-scored for the Steelbacks with 47 not out from 32 ballsJustin Broad top-scored for the Steelbacks with 47 not out from 32 balls
Justin Broad top-scored for the Steelbacks with 47 not out from 32 balls

His haul included the prize wicket of England's Dawid Malan for 34 as Vikings were dismissed for 102.

Willey claimed two for 15 from his four overs, with the evergreen Sanderson finishing with two for 22 – both players also recording maidens.

It was a first win at Headingley in any competition for eight years for Northants, and means they rise to sixth in the North Group table, moving on to 10 points - just two behind fourth-placed Lancashire Lightning and second-placed Worcestershire Rapids with three games to play.

The Steelbacks play their final home game of the campaign on Wednesday night against Derbyshire, knowing a win will put them right in the thick of a hunt for a place in the last eight.

“It can change so quickly," said Taylor. "We’ve put in two good performances and turned some good sides over.

"We’re buzzing now, and we want to take that momentum into the next few games. It just takes something to click, and that’s how fluid this format can be."

On the performance to beat Vikings, he said: “We were happy with our score as the guys who batted up top said it was tricky.

"Broady played a great hand as well and the way we started (with the ball) was ridiculously good.

"Willo and Sando put on a master-class there and they were under the pump. We’re really happy with this.”

Yorkshire skipper Yorkshire captain Shan Masood was not as happy, with his side once again collapsing after being bowled out for 68 against Derbyshire on Sunday.

“It feels like deja vu from Chesterfield," said Masood. "Losses are always going to happen, but what we have to work on is the manner of the losses - that goes for both the batting and bowling departments.

“I’ll keep going back. We had Birmingham 50 for four against us, Derby 49 for three. Both teams got 200. Then when teams have gone through our top order, they’ve gone through the whole batting line-up even though we bat until 11.

“If we win all three games, we’re qualifying for sure. If we win two out of three, we’re in the hunt."