T20 Blast: Daryl Mitchell helps Worcestershire beat Northants
NatWest T20 Blast, Wantage Road
Worcestershire Rapids 162-9 (20 overs) beat Northants Steelbacks 131 by 31 runs (18.3 overs)
Daryl Mitchell's five-wicket haul saw Worcestershire beat Northants by 31 runs to leave them one win from reaching the T20 Blast quarter-finals.
Colin Munro (49) and Ben Cox (46) helped the visitors to 162-9.
The hosts started their response brightly, reaching 42 without loss, before opener David Willey was bowled by Joe Leach for 19.
But Mitchell then tore through the Northants order to finish with 5-28 as the hosts were dismissed for 131.
The Rapids skipper's impressive performance saw him claim three caught-and-bowled, as well as catching Kyle Coetzer (19) off Shaaiq Choudhry (2-21).
Adam Rossington was the pick of the hosts' batsmen with 29 off 19 balls.
Holders Northants are now on the verge of elimination from the competition as a result of their defeat.
If Nottinghamshire Outlaws get the better of Leicestershire Foxes on Sunday at Trent Bridge, then the Steelbacks' defence of their title is all but over.
Worcestershire captain Daryl Mitchell:
"We assessed the pitch, Colin Munro and myself and we thought that 150 was about par, so we were a shade over that.
"We bowled very well and kept them under pressure as it was starting to stick in the pitch a bit. We executed our plan to perfection.
"We try to go hard in the powerplay when batting and although we lost a few wickets in the first half of the innings, Ben Cox held us together."
Northants captain Kyle Coetzer:
"There's quite a bit of disappointment around, although we've still got a very slim chance of making the quarter-finals.
"They had two guys who nullified the spin by switch-hitting and that makes you start thinking about your other options.
"I thought 135 or 140 was about right, but it was down to them as they played really well."