Liddle's pride as Northants overcome adversity to secure battling draw at Glamorgan
Northants overcame real adversity to claim a gritty LV= Insurance County Championship Group Three draw against Glamorgan in Cardiff.
And bowling coach Chris Liddle spoke of his pride in a performance that saw the County bat out the entire 92.4 overs of the fourth day despite only having nine players.
Already hampered by Gareth Berg's ankle injury that ruled him out of the match on day two, Northants were further affected by the sad news that Luke Procter had to drop out ahead of the final day due to a family bereavement.
On top of that, Rob Keogh had to interrupt what would turn out to be a match-saving innings in mid-afternoon to attend his late grandmother’s funeral service online.
But the team put all the difficulties behind them to recover from falling to 52 for three before lunch to finish the day on 250 for five.
Keogh made 71 not out from 137 balls and Harry Gouldstone, in only his second first-class innings, a grafting 67 not out from 199 balls.
Simon Kerrigan also played his part with a crucal 36 from 106 balls, and it was a remarkable effort to frustrate the home side.
“It’s been a tough trip for all the lads," admitted bowling coach Liddle.
"It’s not gone to plan at all and we’ve had some stuff come up which we couldn’t have foreseen.
“But today showed the fight we have in this team, and I’m proud of the efforts to bat out the day and bring home the draw.
"The lads showed great fight to get us over the line. We had a couple of solid partnerships which was enough in the end.
“You never want to give an opposition an opening with easy wickets like the run out (Saif Zaib was run out just before lunch), but credit to Harry Gouldstone.
"He batted for over four hours in only his second County Championship match.”
Glamorgan coach Matthew Maynard had praise for both sides.
“Our boys were awesome," said the former England batsman. "They left it all out there on the pitch and there are a lot of tired bodies in the changing room.
"Credit to Rob Keogh, he showed terrific resilience.
"It was a difficult day for Northants with a lot going on, and I think in the end they did it for Luke Procter. They made it very tough for us.
"We thought the wicket would spin but if we’re honest we probably didn’t get enough balls in the right area.
"We lost nearly a day of cricket to rain so it would have been interesting to see how the wicket would have played with another two-and-a-half sessions on it.
"Everyone tried their guts out and that’s all you can ask for.”