Northants coach Ripley has his fingers crossed for Sales retention

MULLING OVER HIS FUTURE - David Sales has been offered a one-year contract by Northants
MULLING OVER HIS FUTURE - David Sales has been offered a one-year contract by Northants
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David Ripley is hopeful that David Sales will still be a Northamptonshire player in 2014.

The middle order batsman has been offered a new one-year contract after a strong finish to the season that saw him register three first-class hundreds.

And head coach Ripley is optimistic that the County Ground hasn’t seen the last of the veteran number three.

He said: “I think that we need hiim and that we look light without him.

“He looked in good form early in the season without getting many but in the last few weeks he showed that he’s still got something and hopefully he’ll sign the contract.”

In the middle of the year it appeared as though Sales’ County career was on its last legs but Ripley admitted that he doesn’t want that to be the case.

He continued: “He’s been free to talk to anyone else this year and he’ll have to assess whether he wants a one-year deal or to see if there is more security elsewhere.

“I always wanted to keep him if we could so I’m pleased we’ve made an offer.

“Any player, in the last year of a contract, if they’re not in the first team, would fear the worst but that’s not how it panned out and as far as I’m concerned David could still play for a while longer yet.”

Meanwhile, bowler Luke Evans has been released and he joins Christian Davis, Con de Lange and Sam Sweeney on the unretained list

The former Durham seamer didn’t make a first-team appearance last season and Ripley said it was a situation that was unlikely to change.

He said: “Statistically he hasn’t had a great year in the seconds and there hasn’t really been the chance for him to play.

“On the plus side, he’s been fit, he’s played all year and has been an excellent member of the squad.

“He’s a real trooper, always upbeat and happy to congratulate the other lads when they’ve done well.

“It’s a shame that we couldn’t keep him but he needs to be playing and he’s at the stage of his career where that is the case.

“Hopefully someone else will give him an opportunity to play.”