Rain secures the draw between Leicestershire and Northamptonshire

Rain secures the draw between Leicestershire and Northamptonshire

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Result: Leicestershire 332 & 132-6d drew with Northamptonshire 151 & 30-1

Leicestershire were denied the chance to push for a second win of the County Championship season, after rain ensured only seven overs were possible on the final day at Grace Road, following the total wash out on day three.

Rainfall on Tuesday and overnight left the outfield saturated, but after numerous inspections throughout the afternoon, the umpires eventually gave the green light for play to begin.

However with only 24 overs remaining for Leicestershire to take all ten Northants wickets, after declaring their second innings 132-6, a lead of 313, it always seemed an unlikely ask, despite a pitch livened up having spent almost 48 hours under cover.

And indeed despite Clint McKay bowling Ben Duckett with the third ball, bad light closed in after only seven overs and hands were shaken, Leicestershire left rueing their decision not to enforce the follow-on having bowled Northants out for 151 on Monday, a first innings lead of 181.

Northants head coach David Ripley admitted his side had benefitted from the rain, after a substandard bowling performance on the opening day left them behind in the game.

“Given a better start on day one the game could have gone differently for us but the rain has probably helped us as knocking off 300 on a last day pitch wasn’t going to be easy,” he said. “We’ve got the players who could have done that but the rain favours us a bit more than Leicester.

“We’ve not been at our best, it has been very stop start and I think some of that has been reflected in how we’ve played, we’ve been a bit stop start ourselves in our performances.

“We weren’t very good here on the first day, what we’ve done since the first day I’ve been very pleased with, thought we came back from that on day two to take 11 wickets for 150 runs, but obviously the first day was pretty crucial and the amount of extras we conceded.

“It’s been a good cricket wicket, I think it was the right decision to bowl, there was a bit in the wicket, but I think we’re both by disappointed [by second day batting], us with 150, we imploded a bit, lost some cheap wickets and then being 130-6.”

The match was the last in Jake Libby’s month load from Nottinghamshire, but Ripley confirmed he will hold talks with Mick Newell over the possibility of extending the openers stay at Wantage Road.

“This is formally his last fixture so I’ll be speaking to Mick Newell to see what plans they’ve got, if Alex Hales is selected for England it might be that Jake gets an opportunity at Notts.

“They’ve been generous enough to let us have him for free so far so we’d have to talk about whether there’s any fee if we keep him, and we’ve got players returning from injury ourselves so that’ll all unfold in the next couple of days.”

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