Wednesday, January 26th, 2022

All you need to know about the 2022 Vitality Blast

When does the Vitality Blast start?

This year we will be celebrating the 20th edition of the world’s longest running professional domestic Twenty20 competition.

Our opening fixture of this year’s Vitality Blast sees us travel to Leeds to face Yorkshire Vikings at Headingley on Wednesday, May 25. Our first home fixture sees us face local rivals Birmingham Bears at New Road on Friday, June 3.

The group stage will be played over 40 days, with the final round-robin matches to be staged on Sunday, July 3.

The quarter-finals will be played from July 6-10 with Finals Day at Edgbaston on July 16.

How can I get tickets now?

Yes. Supporters can have a Blast this summer at every home group stage fixture by buying their season pass now. Hospitality packages are also on sale now and can be purchased by clicking here.

This year’s Vitality Blast will feature more supporter-friendly timeslots, with 99 of the 126 group-stage matches to be played on a Thursday night, Friday night or at the weekend.

How many ‘overseas’ players can each county play?

Each county can field a maximum of two ‘overseas’ players in a Vitality Blast match.

Some big-name stars have already been signed up to play alongside our own overseas signing, Australia’s Matthew Wade, including Rashid Khan (Sussex Sharks), Carlos Brathwaite (Birmingham Bears), Marnus Labuschagne (Glamorgan), Shaheen Afridi (Middlesex), Qais Ahmed (Kent Spitfires), Mohammad Rizwan (Sussex Sharks), Travis Head (Sussex Sharks) with many more to come.

Matthew Wade in T20 International action for Australia at last year’s World Cup

What are the groups and format?

This hasn’t changed. The groups remain the same with the familiar North and South split, while each county will play 14 group-stage matches (seven at home and seven away).

North Group

Birmingham Bears, Derbyshire Falcons, Durham, Lancashire Lightning, Leicestershire Foxes, Northamptonshire Steelbacks, Notts Outlaws, Worcestershire Rapids, Yorkshire Vikings.

South Group

Essex Eagles, Gloucestershire, Hampshire Hawks, Kent Spitfires, Glamorgan, Middlesex, Somerset, Surrey, Sussex Sharks.

How do counties qualify for the knockout stages?

The quarter-finals will be seeded, with the higher-seeded team set to host their quarter-final. So, as an example, the top team in the North Group will host the fourth-ranked team from the South Group in the quarter-finals.

The four quarter-finals winners will qualify for Finals Day at Edgbaston on July 16.

All knockout matches will have a reserve day should that be required.

How can I watch and follow?

Sky Sports is set to broadcast 19 matches throughout the group stage, with each county set to feature at least twice before the four quarter-finals and Finals Day.

All Vitality Blast fixtures will be available via BBC Local Radio stations with extensive coverage also on 5 Live Sports Extra.

We will once again be live streaming all of our home group stage fixtures in the competition via our official website and our YouTube Channel.