First Team Coach Mark Robinson admits the feeling is 'very raw' as the Bears cruelly bowed out of the Vitality Blast.

In a thrilling contest, Essex looked on the road to a semi-final spot on Finals Day, before a barrage of wickets brought the game towards the Bears.

But with a partisan crowd engrossed to every ball, the hosts secured the win by two wickets in a dramatic final over.

“It’s very raw at the minute and we’re all very disappointed,” said Robinson. “Essex probably deserved to win the game, because they executed a little bit better than us but we hung around.

“We dragged it back and you think you’ve got an outside chance, but it’s a game of inches. The ball just lobs over Barney’s (Ed Barnard) head at mid-wicket and if that goes to hand they’re nine down needing three off two. It’s the hope that kills you, isn’t it?

“We weren’t at our best and we felt we were 15, maybe 10 short, but we also felt it was defendable. They got off to a good start in the powerplay and we hung around by taking wickets.

“What it was, was a great finish. It was brilliant to see the crowd so involved and so behind us. We feel disappointed, because we got so close and couldn’t get over the line.”