Northamptonshire dominated with bat and ball to record their first win of the 2019 Royal London One Day Cup.
After a disappointing pair of games to kick off the competition, the Steelbacks made one change to the starting eleven with Ricardo Vasconcelos taking the place of Rob Newton. Players and supporters paused before play to remember Northamptonshire player number 476, Con de Lange. A minute of complete silence around the ground to remember the great man who sadly passed away during the week.
Jeetan Patel won the toss and put the home side in and it wasn’t long before they had their first breakthrough.
Josh Cobb’s lean patch continued when he was bowled by Henry Brooke with just the third ball of the day. Vasconcelos walked to the crease and wasted no time getting things moving, getting off the mark with a pull shot that sailed for six over fine leg. Richard Levi then began to show the quality of batting many have become used to over the years. Blazing away with a series of powerfully struck boundaries, Levi and Vasconcelos took the score past 50 in just 6.2 overs.
Vasconcelos was unlucky to go for 19, his inside edge finding off stump to give Brookes his second. Levi continued to send the Warwickshire attack to all parts of The County Ground, hammering four boundaries and three sixes before edging to the keeper for 48 from just 37 balls. At this stage the Steelbacks were 3/76 in the 11th over, a delicate position but a solid platform for Wakely and Keogh to build from.
The pair steadied and kept the scoring rate going, both finding the fence a number of times and the partnership soon moving past 50. Pushed one place up the order from the first two fixtures, Keogh seemed to relish his new role. Working gaps and running hard, his partnership with the Captain reached 86 before Wakely was trapped in front by Patel for 48. Keogh pushed on, now joined by Rossington and together they began to put the foot down.
After adding another 90 to the total, Keogh became Patel’s second wicket as he went for 69. This brought Jason Holder to the crease with the Windies captain in no mood to tap and run. Rossington hit 12 boundaries in his innings of 68 and looked to have another over cover, but a great catch by Patel put an end to the keeper-batsman’s stay. Holder continued to show his international quality, clearing the ropes with the last two balls of the innings, the second of which sailing over the Lynn Wilson indoor school. Finishing with a strike rate of 193 his partnership of 68 with Procter lifted the Steelbacks to their highest one-day total at The County Ground, 358/6.
There may have been some nervous spectators after Ed Pollock raced to 20 off the first two overs. Fears were soon put to rest though as Blessing Muzarabani had his first wicket in the next over, Sibley edging to Levi at second slip for 1. A small partnership then built before the introduction of Holder into the attack paid off immediately, Hains lbw to the Windies captain for 7. Ambrose came to the crease and seemed to struggle with the extra bounce of the towering Steelbacks attack. Just 2 overs later he fell for a thirteen ball duck, Muzarabani finding the edge again through to Rossington.
Not to be outdone, Holder had his second the next over, dangerman Pollock picking out Cobb at third man for a quickfire 36. A change of bowling seven overs later saw Buck take his first, sending Banks’ middle stump cartwheeling in spectacular fashion. Sanderson returned to the attack with great effect, finding himself on a hattrick two balls into his second spell. Rhodes legside flick picking out Buck on the boundary before Brookes got into a tangle trying to pull, the ball ballooning off the edge to Keogh running in from point. Sanderson would have another two overs later, Miles also attempting to pull, Holder settling under a simple catch at mid off.
The Steelbacks then wrapped things up quickly with Holder and Muzarabani both adding an extra wicket to the hauls. Thomson spooning a catch to Levi from Holder and Muzarabani making a mess of Panayi’s stumps to close out the game. Jason Holder capped off an excellent day out with figures of 3/26, Muzarabani claiming 3/28.
Northamptonshire 358/6 (Keogh 69, Rossington 68) defeated Warwickshire 164 (Holder 3/26, Muzarabani 3/28) Full scorecard.
The Steelbacks now travel to Lancashire for their next One Day Cup fixture on the 24th of April before returning to The County Ground on Friday the 26th. Tickets for our remaining home fixtures are available online now, you’ll save £5 by buying in advance.