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Buck and Wakely Reflect on Positive Start

While it wasn’t a win to get the season underway at The County Ground, there were plenty of positives to take from a hard fought 4 days against Middlesex.

After being asked to bat by the visitors, Northamptonshire piled on 445 in their first innings, a great team batting performance in their first hit out of the year.

“Given what happened last year it was important that we started well, that first day was vital for us.” Captain Alex Wakely said.

“We needed to win the supporters back, get people back on our side and get the confidence high in the dressing room.”

Nathan Buck led from the front with the ball but was full of praise for the batting group’s efforts.

“I thought the way we batted after being put in, batting for four sessions and getting a big score, that’s the first time we’ve done that in a while so credit to all the batters, they got stuck in and adapted.” he said.

“It’s quite pleasing as a bowler when you look at the board and you’ve got 400 plus to bowl at, by no means was it flat, I think the boys played well.”

Northamptonshire continually beat the bat without finding the edge in both innings. Buck claimed 5 wickets in the first and finished with figures of 8/107 in the match, his best in first-class cricket, but was keen to point out the efforts of his bowling partners.

“It’s always nice to start the season well and get a couple of poles to put the team in a decent position, it was a good feeling.” he said.

“Sando bowled like a dream, I think he’ll bowl like that a lot for us and take so many poles. We did speak about how much we beat the bat, it’s going to come. If we all bowl like that as a collective unit, then we should be fine.”

A lot of the hype leading up to the first fixture surrounded Windies captain Jason Holder who joins the club for the opening two County Championship matches of the season. Skipper Wakely said the 201cm West Indian was having an impact on and off the field.

“Jason Holder’s been a massive influence for us, he’s come in with a fresh positivity, he’s not scarred from anything last year and he’s the best all-rounder in the world. He’s come in and he’s helping the youngsters, he’s a breath of fresh air for us in the dressing rooms.”

Nathan Buck shared a similar view.

“He’s just a very relaxed man who’s the number 1 test all round in the world so he brings in a lot of experience and he’s just good to chat to. He obviously brings the depth in the batting with him at 7 and Procter at 8 we can go on and get the good scores.”

Focus now shifts to Wales as the team travels to Cardiff ahead of the fixture against Glamorgan and Wakely believes it’s a case of more of the same for Northamptonshire.

“In the season we play so much cricket you just don’t get enough time to train, so when things are going well you just go with the momentum and vice versa when things are going badly it can be tough to turn it around. We’ve started well now, but it’s only the first game so it’s important that we start well against Glamorgan. As a side when we start well we tend to carry on through so I’ll be hammering that all season, making sure that whenever we cross that white line we’re on it from the start.”

Day 1 against Glamorgan at Sofia Gardens gets underway at 11am on the 11th of April. Follow us on Twitter for match coverage and updates.

Our next home fixture is the Royal London One Day Cup clash with Warwickshire on Sunday the 21st of April. https://www.northantscrickettickets.com/

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