Steelbacks routed as Rapids rub salt in the wounds

Ben Duckett was dismissed without scoring at New Road (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Ben Duckett was dismissed without scoring at New Road (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

Alex Wakely hit an unbeaten 54 for the Steelbacks but their chastening start to this season's Vitality Blast continued against Worcestershire Rapids at New Road.

In a game reduced to nine overs per side due to a rain delay, the Rapids raced to a massive 130 for three.

The Steelbacks simply couldn't stem the tide at any point as Worcestershire took total control and eventually registered a 41-run victory.

After Northants won the toss and elected to bowl, Martin Guptill was dismissed for nine by Rory Kleinveldt, with Richard Levi taking the catch to leave the hosts 28 for one after 1.5 overs.

But Joe Clarke then took up the fight, making 28 from 13 balls before Graeme White had him caught by Brett Hutton.

Still the Rapids ran riot as Travis Head blasted the ball to all parts as the Australian made 37 from 14 deliveries before Levi again took a catch, this time off the bowling of Seekkuge Prasanna.

Ross Whiteley and Ben Cox then combined to ensure the innings finished with a flourish as they finished on 36 and nine respectively.

And the Steelbacks suffered the worst possible start as Ben Duckett went for a golden duck before Josh Cobb also departed without scoring.

Dylan Pennington, who was to finish with fantastic figures of two for nine, was having a field day.

And he dismissed Levi for 14 before Steven Crook became the third Steelbacks batsman to register a duck.

When Prasanna was bowled by Patrick Brown for four, the Steelbacks were 29 for five, and it got worse as Brown bowled Kleinveldt for two to make it 35 for six.

Wakely then ensured no further wickets would fall as he racked up an impressive four fours and four sixes from 21 balls to pass the half-century mark.

But the Steelbacks were never in the hunt and they remain rooted to the bottom of the North Group table ahead of Thursday's televised home fixture against Derbyshire Falcons.