Durham and Derbyshire also register wins, while defending champions Nottinghamshire are demolished by Birmingham Bears; Surrey storm to second win in South Group, with Sussex, Hampshire and Kent also coming out on top
Moeen Ali struck 52 against Northamptonshire in the Vitality Blast
England all-rounder Moeen Ali followed up a fifty with figures of 2-21 to lead Worcestershire to a 32-run win over Northamptonshire in their Vitality Blast clash at Northampton.
Worcestershire posted 185-7 after being put in by their hosts – Moeen Ali launching four sixes on his way to 52 off 30 balls and Brett D’Oliveira striking 43 off 34 balls before a crucial cameo from Ben Cox (26 off 10). Northamptonshire vs Worcestershire scorecard
Ross Whiteley takes another stunning catch on the boundary to dismiss the in-form Ricardo Vasconcelos. Whiteley had also taken another beauty against Notts Outlaws on Wednesday
Richard Levi fell to the first ball of Northamptonshire’s reply, picking out D’Oliveira at backward point with a thumping drive before Ross Whiteley snaffled his second flying catch of the competition to send back Ricardo Vasconcelos for just one.
Northants failed to recover from 16-2 as Moeen turned the screw, while Charlie Morris returned 2-31. Saif Zaib struck a dashing 36 off 21 balls which included five fours off as many balls but the target proved too stiff.
Brett D’Oliviera reacts instinctively as Richard Levi falls first ball for Northants as they attempt to chase 186 against Worcestershire Rapids
Brydon Carse inspired Durham to a 20-run victory over Yorkshire in the first game of their Blast campaign at Emirates Riverside. Durham vs Yorkshire scorecard
Carse took centre stage with the bat after it appeared the hosts had spurned an excellent platform. The 25-year-old scored his maiden T20 fifty to elevate Durham to a match-winning total of 181, despite career-best figures of 4-44 from Jordan Thompson.
Jonny Bairstow threatened the home side, but Carse made the decisive impact to dismiss the England man for 67. A late surge from Harry Brook proved in vain as the home side held their composure to get off the mark in the competition at the first attempt.
Moeen Ali reaches a 28-ball fifty with a huge six!
Matt Critchley struck an unbeaten 80 as Derbyshire registered their first win of the Blast season, despite Afghan seamer Naveen-ul-Haq taking 3-26 on his home debut for Leicestershire. Leicestershire vs Derbyshire scorecard
Critchley and Luis Reece, who hit 51, struck four sixes apiece, while Gavin Griffiths, who took four wickets against Lancashire the night before, added one more but conceded 26 in an over for figures of 1-49 from three.
Critchley then took 2-31 with his leg breaks and Netherlands pace bowler Logan van Beek 3-37 as the Foxes were bowled out for 186 in 19 overs to lose by 23 runs, Rishi Patel top-scoring with 35 off 19 balls.
Defending champions Nottinghamshire slumped to an 18-run defeat after they were savaged by a brutal Birmingham Bears batting display in the North Group match at Trent Bridge. Nottinghamshire vs Warwickshire scorecard
The Bears roared to 229-5, their third highest T20 total, with Sam Hain and Carlos Brathwaite plundering 84 from the last five overs after Ed Pollock set the tone with 62 from 34 balls.
Hain, already averaging 248 in T20 games at Trent Bridge, made an unbeaten 53 off 29 balls after being dropped on one, while Brathwaite hammered four sixes in his 44 from 18 balls.
Ben Duckett’s 51 from 27 balls gave the Outlaws hope and Tom Moores made 38 from 21 balls, but Brathwaite took 2-28 and Jake Lintott 2-30 to restrict the Outlaws to 211-9.
Laurie Evans and Sam Curran blitzed a century stand as Surrey made it maximum points from their first two Blast games with a merciless seven-wicket destruction of Somerset at Taunton. Somerset vs Surrey scorecard
The home side posted 187-6 after losing the toss, Tom Abell leading the way with 69 off 44 balls. Gareth Batty was the pick of the Surrey attack with 1-26.
In reply, Surrey breezed to 188-3 with four overs to spare, Evans striking two sixes and eight fours in his 65, while Curran’s career-best 72 not out featured six maximums and five other boundaries.
Their third-wicket partnership added 104 in just 8.5 overs and sent Somerset crashing to an embarrassing defeat.
Phil Salt and George Garton gunned down a target of 178 with 16 balls to spare to get Sussex off to a winning start in the Blast with a five-wicket win at Gloucestershire. Gloucestershire vs Sussex scorecard
A crowd of 3,600 was admitted into Nevil Road, with all tickets sold in advance, but they were sent home disappointed after a flat-out chase.
Salt, in his first appearance of the season for Sussex, made 77 not out from 49 balls and Garton, who had only made 103 runs in 23 T20s before this, made 46 from only 25 balls as Sussex waltzed home.
Chris Wood lead a superb defensive bowling display as Hampshire beat Essex by 13 runs to record a victory in their second match of this season’s Blast. Essex vs Hampshire scorecard
Left-arm fast bowler Wood’s four overs went for just 15 runs, along with the scalp of Aron Nijjar, with fellow homegrown player Liam Dawson returning a miserly 1-17.
The Vitality Blast is only just underway but Ross Whiteley, Tom Curran and Brett D’Oliveira have already made their mark!
Joe Weatherley top-scored with 42 as Hampshire struggled to 155-6 but – despite Tom Westley’s 44 – the hosts were bowled out for 142 – losing the last five wickets for 22 runs.
A brilliantly-measured partnership between Jordan Cox and Jack Leaning steered Kent Spitfires to a 16-run win over Middlesex in their match at Canterbury. Kent vs Middlesex scorecard
The hosts were wobbling on 47-4 before Cox and Leaning both made 64, helping them recover to 178-8, despite a hat-trick for Chris Green, who took 5-32.
Luke Hollman countered with a high-class 51 off 33 balls, but the visitors lost wickets too frequently to seriously threaten the hosts and finished on 162-8.
Our live Vitality Blast coverage continues with Sussex against Hampshire from 6.55pm on Sky Sports Cricket on Saturday.