10/8/2016 0 Comments
County Championship Review: The County Championship started slowly for Northamptonshire drawing 7 of their first 8 matches. However, once the white ball cricket was out the way, Northants finished well with 4 wins from the last 6 games giving the club a 5th placed finish in Division 2; which will be a cause for optimism for Alex Wakely’s men going into next season.
One-Day Cup Review: Northants played some superb cricket to win the North group of the One Day Cup. Northants faced Surrey at the County Ground at the Quarter Final stage and were agonisingly beaten on the last ball of Surrey’s run chase of 279-9, which included a glorious 130 from Kumar Sangakkara.
T20 Review: Northants have enjoyed T20 cricket of late and hopes were high this season, having won the T20 Blast in 2013, and reaching the final last year in 2015. Northants came 2nd in the North group with 7 wins from their 14 games with scores of 160 plus a regularity. At Finals day, Northants beat Notts in the semi-final with an explosive 84 from star man Ben Duckett. In a tense final, Northants collapsed to 9-3 chasing 154 against Durham, but an 110-run stabilising partnership from Josh Cobb and skipper Alex Wakely secured a glorious victory at Edgbaston.
Moment of the Season: Winning their 2nd T20 trophy was undoubtedly the highlight of the season for Northants. Additionally, part-time spinner Rob Keogh getting 9/52 in the innings and 13/125 in the match against Glamorgan was extraordinary and the best match figures for the club for 40 years.
MVP: Without any question, the MVP for Northants this season has been Ben Duckett, is there any limit to this man’s ability? 1,338 runs at an average of a shade over 58 in Championship cricket, including 282 against Sussex has seen England come calling for the Bangladesh tour this winter – not to mention becoming the first cricketer to win both the PCA Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year awards in the same year.
Low point of the season: In a largely successful season for the club, there were not too many low points. Losing on the last ball in the Quarter Final of the One-Day Cup was tough. Although the injury suffered by Olly Stone which ruled him out for the season whilst celebrating the wicket of Moeen Ali was a huge blow for the club.
Ones to watch for next season: In addition to Ben Duckett (who may find himself occupied on England duty), Ben Sanderson has impressed everyone in his return to professional cricket after playing in the minor counties league. Sanderson took 55 wickets at an average of 21 in the championship, including career-best figures of 8/73 in the victory against Gloucestershire, form which earned him a new three-year contract with the club.
Where do you need to strengthen next season?: With the loss of Olly Stone to Warwickshire, Northants look light in pace bowling without having to rely on the all-rounder Rory Kleinveldt to get through so many overs. The recent addition of Nathan Buck from Lancashire is a brilliant signing, but one more addition to the bowling attack could push Northants on to taking 20 wickets more regularly.
Hopes for next season?: For next season, I’d like to see Northants really push to turn more of the 9 draws they had this season into more wins and to compete near the top of division 2. The County ground has always been spin friendly so White, Keogh and Panesar may be the key to success next season. It is notoriously difficult to defend a title, but Northants will aim to once again be in the knockout stages with the white ball next season.
Describe your season in a sentence: Northamptonshire have once again proven the worth of good coaching, leadership and team spirit.
Review by Harry Hill (@HarryHill96)
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