David Payne and Matt Taylor guide Gloucestershire to victory over Essex

David Payne and Matt Taylor claimed four wickets apiece as Gloucestershire opened their Vitality Blast account with an impressive five-wicket victory over Essex.

Payne took three wickets with the new ball and then removed Daniel Sams to finish with four for 24, while Taylor cleaned up the tail to return career-best T20 figures of four for 22 from four overs and restrict last season’s beaten finalists to 141 for nine.

Jordan Cox top-scored with 48 and dominated a stand of 64 in 6.5 overs for the fourth wicket with Paul Walter, who contributed 43.

Gloucestershire made relatively light work of chasing a modest target, James Bracey posting 49 from 30 balls and dominating a stand of 83 in seven overs with Cameron Bancroft, who weighed in with 32 as Gloucestershire wrapped up victory with 18 balls to spare.

Ravi Bopara hit an unbeaten 56 from 42 deliveries as Northamptonshire Steelbacks made a winning start in a final-ball thriller against Derbyshire Falcons.

Former England all-rounder Bopara shared a partnership of 67 from 52 balls with 38-year-old Zimbabwe international Sikandar Raza.

Although Raza fell to Zak Chappell with 25 still needed, Bopara kept his head to steer Northamptonshire over the line along with Lewis McManus, who levelled the scores with a boundary off Luis Reece and struck the final ball for a single.

Earlier, David Lloyd had top-scored for the Falcons with 41 from 22 as they posted 162 for seven, with Steelbacks skipper David Willey taking one for 17 from four overs.

Tom Aspinwall impressed on his T20 debut with four for 18 as Lancashire annihilated Durham by nine wickets in their opening Vitality Blast match at Emirates Old Trafford.

Steven Croft’s side put their Championship woes behind them to chase down Durham’s under-par 75 in eight overs.

Durham’s total proved no sort of target for Lancashire’s batters, Luke Wells making 49 not out to confirm a comfortable victory.

Dan Moriarty made life easy for Yorkshire’s star-studded batting line-up with a career best four for 25 as the Vikings brushed Worcestershire aside by eight wickets at Headingley.

Moriarty put the skids under the Rapids with all four wickets during the first half of an innings which saw them bowled out for 101 in 15.4 overs, whilst Ethan Brookes top-scored with a middle order 42 off 32 balls.

Yorkshire made light work of the meagre target, ex-England Test opener Adam Lyth top-scored with 55 out out off 33 balls, the win sealed inside 12 overs. Root finished unbeaten on 13.

Tom Curran produced heroics with bat and ball to give Surrey victory over Hampshire Hawks, claiming three for 32 to peg the Hawks back and help restrict them to 162.

But his starring role came with the bat as he came in with 63 needed with 38 balls remaining to smash 37 off 20 to see Surrey to a five-wicket victory.