Ex­pec­ta­tions high fol­low­ing four-day clash

The Cricket Paper - - NORTH PREVIEW - By Matt Wright

NORTHANTS travel to Der­byshire for the sec­ond time this month, al­though their clash in the One-Day Cup will do well to match the drama of their County Cham­pi­onship fix­ture.

The four-day match on Easter week­end looked set to peter out into a draw, only for the two cap­tains to make an ef­fort to force a re­sult on the fi­nal day. It paid off spec­tac­u­larly for Northants, who chased down 326 with one de­liv­ery to spare thanks to a six from Rory Klein­veldt, a man who thrived in the 50-over for­mat last sea­son.

The big South African blasted 128 off just 63 balls against Notts in the group stage and struck an un­beaten 76 in the quar­ter­fi­nal against Sur­rey, which Northants lost by one wicket.

Their cam­paign starts a lot ear­lier this time, but head coach David Ri­p­ley has no prob­lem with the change.

He said: “The wick­ets may nib­ble a bit more than we’d like but when we’ve played it later in the sea­son, some of the pitches were a bit tired and the ball has gripped a bit and spin has come into play.

“There haven’t been mas­sive scores – we had that game at Notts but no-one was re­ally pil­ing on past 300, so it will be in­ter­est­ing to see how the new sched­ule plays out.”

Mean­while, Der­byshire – who got their one-day cam­paign un­der­way at Durham yes­ter­day – are hop­ing to kick-start their sea­son after back-to-back Cham­pi­onship losses.

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