Steelbacks boss Ripley surprised Vikings have failed to set sail in T20

Steelbacks head coach David Ripley (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Steelbacks head coach David Ripley (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

David Ripley says he is surprised that Yorkshire Vikings are not sitting pretty in the NatWest T20 Blast North Group top two.

The Northants Steelbacks welcome the Vikings to the County Ground on Friday night, with the hosts seeking a home quarter-final and the visitors struggling for any sort of form, having been thrashed by Worcestershire Rapids on Tuesday night.

And Ripley said: “I’m surprised (that they are eighth in the North Group) because you put that team down on paper with those two signings (Aaron Finch and Glenn Maxwell), and they have been in the finals day not that long ago.

“They’ve got all that experience already and you might have thought they’d have gone better, but that’s the nature of the competition: anyone can beat anyone on their day.

“Yorkshire have had some tight defeats; I saw them lose the Roses game when Jos Buttler won the game for Lancs.

“You just have to get on a bit of a roll pinching those tight games. It’s very small margins.

“You’d have thought they’d be more likely to be looking for a home quarter-final rather than not qualifying at all.”

Northants cruised to an exceptional eight-wicket win at Headingley last month.

And Ripley said: “That was our best performance of the season so far. We played really well with bat and ball and fielded really well as well.”