Disappointed Ripley wants more thought from his batsmen

There wasn't much to smile about in the Steelbacks' dugout at Grace Road
There wasn't much to smile about in the Steelbacks' dugout at Grace Road

Northamptonshire head coach David Ripley admitted to being ‘disappointed’ with his side’s showing at Grace Road in the Natwest t20 Blast.

The Steelbacks were dismissed for a poor 82 by the Leicestershire Foxes but were saved by the rain which arrived just after the first innings had been concluded.

And Ripley felt that his charges were guilty of failing to adapt to the bowler-friendly conditions.

He said: “There was a real contrast in the two days from being at our best but for the second evening running our batting has been disappointing.

“We didn’t identify what a good score was. It wasn’t a great one-day wicket as it seamed far too much but we should have identified that and batted our 20 overs.

“With 130 on the board our four seamers would’ve been a real handful but it would’ve been nearly impossible to defend 80.

“We’ve got some experienced players and they should have been talking as pairs and thinking as individuals.

“We saw with Graeme (White) last night, you pick up a single a ball and then have a big finish and you can get 130 or 140.”

Throughout the campaign, the Steelbacks’ batting efforts have been built around the odd strong individual performance, primarily from their openers and Ripley wants to see a touch more selectivity, especially from David Willey.

He added: “The scores we’ve produced have been from one piece of brilliance, mainly from either David (Willey) or Richard (Levi) but it doesn’t help when your two big guns are back in the dugout in the first couple of overs.

“David’s still developing his role at the top of the order and he recognises that he’s got to hit the ball through the field more rather than having to go over the top all of the time.

“If he can do that then he can really open his shoulders at the right time because we know what he can do when he’s in.”

But while Ripley was downbeat after tonight’s effort, he knows his team are still in with a shout of progressing.

“We’ve picked up three points from these two games so we’re still in there but tonight was disappointing,” he said.

“We got out of jail.”