Ripley: Steelbacks didn't need rain to beat Foxes

Rob Keogh claimed a wicket and hit a crucial 37 for the Steelbacks (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Rob Keogh claimed a wicket and hit a crucial 37 for the Steelbacks (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
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David Ripley feels the Steelbacks would have beaten Leicestershire even if the rain hadn't intervened at Grace Road on Friday night.

Northants won by two runs on the Duckworth-Lewis method as the Foxes has reached 107 for three when the weather took hold after 14.3 overs of their reply.

The Steelbacks had earlier made 165 for eight, with Richard Levi smashing 41 on his return to action and Rob Keogh (37) and Alex Wakely (34) also impressing.

In the end, the rain had the final say, but Northants weren't complaining as they secured a narrow success to ruin Leicestershire's 100 per cent start in this season's NatWest T20 Blast.

"I thought Richard Levi played really well - it was good to have him back," Ripley said.

"He showed a touch of quality at the top of the innings, and real power.

"I thought our batting stuttered a little bit, but the partnership between Alex (Wakely) and Rob Keogh was vital, giving us a launchpad.

"We didn't quite finish it off as we wanted to and they bowled well at the death.

"I thought 170 was about par and we didn't quite get that, but I thought if we came out and bowled well we would have a chance.

"It's a shame with the weather because you're never sure which way it would go, but it came down on our side and that's great.

"But I think the way we were competing and bowling, we would have managed to squeeze them, get that rate up and get a genuine win."

Northants now face a quick turnaround as they head to Trent Bridge to face Nottinghamshire Outlaws in a televised clash on Saturday afternoon (start time 2.30pm).

And the champions can head north in high spirits as they currently sit second in the North Group with three wins from their opening five matches.

"We haven't lost since our first game (at home to Derbyshire), but it's a tough match at Notts," Ripley said.

"There have been a lot of runs there tonight. I saw it was 227 plays 222 so it was a very high-scoring game and we'll see what that brings."