Ton-up Keogh happy as Northants put horror show behind them

Rob Keogh admitted is was ‘very pleasing’ for Northants to frustrate hosts Essex at Chelmsford on the first day of the LV= Insurance County Championship clash between the two sides on Thursday.

By Jeremy Casey
Thursday, 28th April 2022, 8:22 pm
Rob Keogh hits out on his way to 22 for Northants at Chelmsford (Picture: Peter Short)
Rob Keogh hits out on his way to 22 for Northants at Chelmsford (Picture: Peter Short)

Especially as the match came just a few months after the County were humiliated in an innings and 44 run defeat at the same venue.

In September, Northants were bowled out for 81 and 45 as they were thrashed in the final game of the 2021 season at Chelmsford, and Keogh admitted that match was still very much in his team’s minds as they rocked up on Thursday morning.

But a stubborn 62 from opener Will Young and 60 not out from Luke Procter ensured there were no such calamities this time around as Northants ground their way to 233 for seven from 97 overs.

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And Keogh, who was making his 100th first-class appearance for Northants, said: “They stuck us in on what is a green, seamer-friendly wicket.

"For us to get through and bat the day is very pleasing.

"The feedback that has been sent back to the changing room is that it is still nipping, it is still swinging even with the older ball.

"And to get through, in my opinion, against the best spinner in the country [Simon Harmer] without him getting any wickets is a great effort from the lads.

“It was slightly disappointing for myself to get out just before tea.

"Me and Procky soaked up a bit of pressure after Emilio and Youngy had just got out and got us to the brink of tea before I chipped one back. That was fairly disappointing but then Procky stuck in there in Procky-like fashion and got us through.

“I think we’ll take that – if someone had said that on this wicket, you’re getting stuck in, 233 for seven, you’re not getting bowled out, come back tomorrow and try and get as close to 300 as possible, try and get a couple of points and get the ball in hand.

“Last year it was last game of the season, it happened, it was one of those pitches where I still think to this day if we’d have Ben Sanderson and Gareth Berg playing the day could have been over by tea on day one.

"We didn’t have our strongest bowling attack and we still bowled them out just as cheaply. It still gets spoken about.

"We rocked up yesterday and saw how green it was and thought, ‘Blimey, can it happen again?’”

Thankfully, it didn’t...