The Northamptonshire Steelbacks host New Zealand ‘A’ in a One-Day match today, as both teams look to get some good 50-over practice in with their own respective competitions in mind.
The Steelbacks will be using this game to give a few players the chance to put their hand up ahead of the side’s Royal London One-Day Cup clash with Yorkshire Vikings on Tuesday. Whilst New Zealand ‘A’ are preparing for a triangular one-day series against England ‘A’ and Sri Lanka ‘A’, which begins next week.
The Steelbacks’ last game saw them host Worcestershire in the Royal London One-Day Cup, at Campbell Park in Milton Keynes. Skipper Kyle Coetzer won the toss and put the visitors into bat, a decision that looked inspired, as the Steelbacks pace bowlers were on fire leaving Worcestershire on 84/4 at the halfway point. However Tom Fell (72) and Ross Whiteley (52) led the Worcestershire fight back as the visitors finished on 274/9.
In reply, the Steelbacks struggled to get going, as none of the top four reached double figures. Ben Duckett tried to lead a Steelbacks comeback but when he fell for 49 with the score on 140/7, it was always going to be an uphill task for the hosts to get victory. The Steelbacks were eventually bowled out for 186, losing by 88 runs.
Ones to Watch
New Zealand will be led by the experienced BJ Watling. The wicket keeper has played 24 tests and 22 ODI’s for his country, and has an ODI batting average of 29.3, which includes five half centuries. The visitors have a good mix youth and experience in their squad including all-rounder Grant Elliott who has played over 50 ODI’s for New Zealand.
David Ripley is resting several players, giving other members of the squad a chance to prove themselves ahead of the team’s next Royal London One-Day Cup match.
David Willey, Steven Crook, Olly Stone, Muhammad Azhar Ullah, James Middlebrook and Richard Levi are all rested for this game.
Taking their place are veterans Andrew Hall and Stephen Peters, exciting youngster Saif Zaib, and finally after impressing for the second XI Gemaal Hussain and Vicram Sohal are also in the matchday squad.