Rain brings halt to Northants' progress

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Leicestershire's LV= County Championship Division Two game against top-of-the-table Northamptonshire at Grace Road ended in a draw, after rain reduced the final day's play to just 36.1 overs.

In that time, Leicestershire advanced from 142 for three to 238 for six, leaving them 329 behind Northamptonshire's mammoth first-innings score of 567 for seven declared.

But poor weather on the final two days denied the visitors the chance of victory, and they had to settle for nine points from the match with Leicestershire collecting five.

Despite two brief stoppages in the morning session, Northamptonshire bowled 30 overs, claiming one wicket as the hosts added 81 runs. Australian Joe Burns was the man out, pinned lbw by Andrew Hall for 77 off 133 balls with a six and 10 fours.

Michael Thornely joined Matthew Boyce in a fifth-wicket stand of 77, twice hitting off-spinner James Middlebrook for six - the first a slog-sweep and the next a sweetly-timed straight drive.

Leicestershire went into lunch on 223 for four but rain delayed the re-start for 80 minutes. When play did get under way again, Steven Crook struck with two wickets in two balls. Thornely, four runs short of a half-century, edged behind and the next delivery saw Rob Taylor provide wicketkeeper David Murphy with another catch.

Jigar Naik prevented the hat-trick by clipping the next ball through midwicket for two runs.

Crook then took the new ball, but bowled only one delivery before another deluge sent the teams off the field for the final time, with the game abandoned as a draw during the tea interval. Boyce finished 40 not out off 127 balls.

It was bottom-of-the-table Leicestershire's seventh draw in eight matches.

Rain brings halt to Northants' progress www.northantscricket.com
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