YORKSHIRE Vikings reached the quarter-finals of the T20 Vitality Blast after Leicestershire Foxes were handed a two-point penalty.

Initially, the side that won the final North Group game would have advanced to the last eight, however Leicestershire’s punishment saw Yorkshire handed the final qualifying place.

The penalty stemmed from two offences from the Foxes in their win over Northamptonshire Steelbacks on Friday.

Naveen-ul-Haq’s two waist high full tosses and Aaron Lilley’s reported verbal abuse towards Jimmy Neesham were the causes of the deduction.

The match between Yorkshire and Leicestershire was played regardless and saw the Vikings slump to a 60-run defeat.

From 20 overs, the Foxes were able to finish with 211-seven after captain Colin Ackermann’s unbeaten 72.

Nick Welch scored 46 in the powerplay as Louis Kimber hit 30. Yorkshire’s David Willey was able to take 3-29.

Yorkshire responded tamely, with just 151-9 in their response. This was in spite of Adam Lyth scoring 52.

Although they were through to the quarter-finals in spite of their loss, Vikings captain David Willey was critical of his side’s poor showings in recent matches.

“Our performances in the last two games, particularly with the ball, have been well below par,” he insisted.

“Going into the quarter-final, we’ve got to play better than we have done. If we are going to go further in the competition, we have to be honest with ourselves as a bowling unit and not make excuses.

“I think the last two games have been a reflection of where we’re at. If you’re not and don’t execute, you’ll get found out.

“If you miss, you’ll get punished. It’s as simple as that. We’ve missed too many times.

“When we’re on it, we’re a good team who can beat teams convincingly. But when we’re under pressure, who’s standing up? Very often, we’re not doing it in high-pressure situations.

“They bowled better than us, and there’s a lot of pressure on the batters when you’re chasing 200.”

Yorkshire’s loss was their second in succession, having lost to Birmingham Bears by 31 runs on Friday.

Paul Stirling scored 81 in 41 balls while Dan Mousley hit a career best 63 not out as Birmingham stormed to a lead at 238-5.

Yorkshire were forced to battle back against the highest total they had ever conceded with Adam Lyth finishing as their top scorer with 69

In spite of their efforts, they could only finish on 207 all out.

Prior to their back-to-back losses, Vikings were able to beat Northamptonshire Steelbacks by 62 runs.

Jimmy Neesham finished the game as the top scorer for Northamptonshire as he was able to secure 26 runs for his side.

Nathan Buck got 19 as Jack White went for 14, with the side going for 128 all out.

Yorkshire, meanwhile, dominated proceedings, principally led by Harry Brook’s 67 runs.

Behind him were Matthew Waite, David Willey and Jordan Thompson, who got 35, 31 and 30 respectively.