LV=CC REPORT: Derbyshire vs Northamptonshire 2015

Thursday 14th May 2015
Written by Danny Painter

Derbyshire were held to a draw on a nail-biting final day as Northamptonshire battled through to the close on 390-9 at The 3aaa County Ground.

Northamptonshire’s final pair of Rob Keogh, who finished unbeaten on 163, and Captain Alex Wakely, who bravely came out to bat despite his injured hand to make 36 not out, batted for 19.5 overs to deny Derbyshire a second win in the LV= County Championship.

Mark Footitt took 4-91, and Scott Elstone recorded career-best figures of 3-68, but they were unable to take the final wicket against a Northamptonshire side who finished 37 runs short of their victory target.

The day started well for Derbyshire as Footitt, having taken both of Derbyshire’s wickets the night before, struck again in the third over of the day as night-watchman Mohammad Azharullah edged to Wayne Madsen at slip for 19.

Rob Newton and Rob Keogh put on a useful partnership of 72 before Newton was bowled for 35 by Shiv Thakor, who was developing an uncanny knack of taking wickets at vital times.

Derbyshire took a big wicket minutes before the interval as Rossington went without scoring to the off-spin of Scott Elstone, with Ben Slater taking a smart catch at short-leg.

Northamptonshire resumed after lunch on 134-5 and Elstone grabbed his second shortly after the break as first innings centurion David Willey was caught by Madsen for 4.

It got even better for Elstone and Derbyshire when Crook was caught, again by Madsen at slip, after scoring a quick-fire 18 to leave the score at 182-7.

Keogh brought up his century in the afternoon as, along with Josh Cobb, he helped frustrate Derbyshire’s bowlers who had the finishing line in sight.

A stubborn partnership of 83 was finally broken by Ben Cotton, who had Cobb caught behind for a battling 43.

Keogh was unbeaten on 135 at tea as he and Rory Kleinveldt guided Northants to 309-8, trailing by 118 runs ahead of the final session.

The new ball was taken soon after tea and Footitt grabbed his fourth wicket as Kleinveldt fended the ball straight to Slater who took another superb catch at short-leg.

Alex Wakely bravely came out to bat as the last man, despite his injured hand, and the visitors had the best part of 20 overs to try and save the game, with 87 runs still required for an unlikely victory.

Wakely showed no signs of the discomfort he was in, as alongside Keogh, the pair set about frustrating Derbyshire’s attack rather than chase down the victory target.

They successfully batted out the final hour of play to earn their side an unlikely draw, as both teams earned 11 points.

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