Northamptonshire County Cricket Club

Northamptonshire County Cricket Club
NorthamptonshireCCCLogo.svg
One Day name Northants Steelbacks
Personnel
Captain Adam Rossington
Josh Cobb (T20)
Coach David Ripley
Team information
Founded 1878
Home ground County Ground, Northampton
Capacity 6,500[1]
History
First-class debut Hampshire
in 1905
at Southampton
Twenty20 Cup wins 2
FP Trophy/NatWest Trophy wins 2
B&H Cup wins 1
Official website northantscricket.com
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First-class

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One-day

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T20

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Northamptonshire County Cricket Club is one of eighteen first-class county clubs within the domestic cricket structure of England and Wales. It represents the historic county of Northamptonshire. Its limited overs team is called the Northants Steelbacks – a reference to the Northamptonshire Regiment which was formed in 1881. The name was supposedly a tribute to the soldiers' apparent indifference to the harsh discipline imposed by their officers.[2] Founded in 1878, Northamptonshire (Northants) held minor status at first but was a prominent member of the early Minor Counties Championship during the 1890s. In 1905, the club joined the County Championship and was elevated to first-class status, since when the team have played in every top-level domestic cricket competition in England.[3]

The club plays the majority of its games at the County Cricket Ground, Northampton, but has used outlier grounds at Kettering, Wellingborough and Peterborough (formerly part of Northamptonshire, but now in Cambridgeshire) in the past. It has also used grounds outside the county for one-day games: for example, at Luton, Tring and Milton Keynes.

During the 2019 season, Northamptonshire were promoted from Division Two of the County Championship. They also played in the North Division of the Royal London One-Day Cup and the North Division of the Vitality t20 Blast.

Honours and Achievements

First XI: Honours/Achievements

Runners-up (4): 1912, 1957, 1965, 1976
Division Two
Winners (1) – 2000
Runners-up (3): 2003, 2013, 2019
Winners (2) – 2013, 2016
Runners-up (1): 2015
Division One
Runners-up (1): 2006
Division Two
Runners-up (Promoted) (1): 1999
Third place (Promoted) (1): 2003
Winners (2) – 1976, 1992
Runners-up (5): 1979, 1981, 1987, 1990, 1995
Winners (1) – 1980
Runners-up (2): 1987, 1996
Winners (2) – 1903, 1904
Shared (2): 1899, 1900

Second XI: Honours

Winners (2) – 1960, 1998
Winners (2) – 1986, 1998

Records

Team totals

Record Score Opposition Venue Year Link
Highest total for 781–7 declared Nottinghamshire Northampton 1995 [1]
Highest total against 673–8 declared Yorkshire Headingley 2003 [2]
Lowest total for 12 Gloucestershire Bristol 1907 [3]
Lowest total against 33 Lancashire Northampton 1977 [4]
Batting
Player Information
Highest scores[6] 1. Mike Hussey
2. Mike Hussey
3. Mal Loye
331* v .Somerset, County Ground, Taunton, 2003
329* v. Essex, County Ground, Northampton, 2001
322* v. Glamorgan, County Ground, Northampton, 1998
Most runs in season[7] 1. Dennis Brookes
2. Norman Oldfield
3. Mike Hussey
2,198, 1952
2,192, 1949
2,055, 2001

Record partnership for each wicket

Bowling
Player Information
Best bowling (innings)[8] 1. Vallance Jupp
2. Albert Thomas
3. Vincent Broderick
10–127 v. Kent, Nevill Ground, Tunbridge Wells, 1932
9–30 v. Yorkshire, Park Avenue, Bradford, 1920
9–35 v. Sussex, Cricketfield Road, Horsham, 1948
Best bowling (match)[9] 1. George Tribe
2. Vallance Jupp
3. George Tribe
15–31 v. Yorkshire, County Ground, Northampton, 1958
15–52 v. Glamorgan, St Helen's, Swansea, 1925
15–75 v. Yorkshire, Park Avenue, Bradford, 1955
Most wickets in season[10] 1. George Tribe
2. George Thompson
3. Nobby Clark
175, 1955
148, 1913
141, 1929
Wicket-keeping
Player Information
Most victims in innings[11] 1. Keith Andrew
2. David Ripley
7 v. Lancashire, Old Trafford, Manchester, 1962
6 v. Sussex, County Ground, Northampton, 1988
Most victims in season[12] 1. Keith Andrew
2. David Ripley
90, 1962
81, 1988

History

Earliest cricket

Cricket had probably reached Northamptonshire by the end of the 17th century and the first two references to cricket in the county are within a few days of each other in 1741. On Monday 10 August, there was a match at Woburn Park between a Bedfordshire XI and a combined Northants and Huntingdonshire XI.[13] Woburn Cricket Club under the leadership of the Duke of Bedford was on the point of becoming a well known club. On Tuesday 18 August, a match played on the Cow Meadow near Northampton between two teams of amateurs from Northamptonshire and Buckinghamshire is the earliest known instance of cricket being played in Northamptonshire county.

Origin of club

On 31 July 1878, the official formation of Northants CCC took place at a meeting in the George Hotel, Kettering based on an existing organisation that dated back to 1820. The 1820 date, if it could be verified, would make Northants the oldest club in the present-day County Championship. The club came to prominence in the Minor Counties Championship during the 1890s as, between 1900 and 1904, the bowling of George Thompson and William East was much too good for almost all batsmen at that level. The county applied for first-class status in 1904 and was promoted the following year when it joined the County Championship. They played its inaugural first-class match versus Hampshire CCC at Southampton on 18, 19 & 20 May 1905 when making its County Championship debut.

Stepping up to first-class

Although Thompson and East proved themselves to be bowlers of high class, a weak batting line-up meant that the team remained close to the bottom of the championship table until Sydney Smith arrived in 1909. After three years in the middle of the table, Northants surprisingly improved to finish second in 1912 and fourth in 1913. Thompson, Smith and William "Bumper" Wells formed one of the strongest attacks in county cricket at the time, whilst Smith and Haywood were the county's best batsmen.

Thompson and Smith finished playing after World War I and, during the inter-war period, Northamptonshire were regularly one of the weaker championship sides. This was exacerbated when Vallance Jupp declined due to age and, despite the arrival of Nobby Clark, a young left arm fast bowler from Huntingdonshire who burst onto the scene at the age of 20 in 1922 with 20 wickets at an average of 17.10 and Fred Bakewell, an exciting batsman who regularly exceeded 1000 runs a season, Northamptonshire could only finish above second from last four times between 1923 and 1948, finishing last every year from 1934 to 1938 and enduring a run of 99 matches from 14 May 1935 to 29 May 1939 without a single championship victory, a record that has never been beaten and doesn't look like being beaten in the future. Things got worse for Northamptonshire during this time when Bakewell's career ended due to a broken arm in a car crash that also resulted in the fatality of teammate, Reginald Northway.[14]

The post-war recovery

After the Second World War, things could only get better for Northamptonshire and they started by recruiting widely from other counties and countries, bringing in Freddie Brown from Surrey; the Australians Jock Livingston, George Tribe and Jack Manning; the New Zealander Peter Arnold; and the Cambridge University opening bat and leg-spinner Raman Subba Row. Brown joined as captain in 1949, and led the team to six place in his first season after previous years of disappointment.[15] Under the new leadership of Dennis Brookes (a stalwart batsman for over 20 years), finished second in 1957, their best finish for 45 years. This was mainly due to the bowling attack of Frank Tyson,[16] Vincent Broderick, Michael Allen, George Tribe and Manning. Northamptonshire were widely considered the best team in England in the late 1950s and early 1960s, during this time Keith Andrew, Northants best ever Wicket-keeper broke the records of most victims in an innings and a season.

Subsequently, the club has seen mixed fortunes. The club has had intermittent success in one-day competitions, but it has still not won the County Championship, although second place was achieved in each of 1957, 1965 and 1976. Nonetheless it has included several famous players qualified for England, including the South African-born batsman Allan Lamb; fast bowler David Larter; the hard hitting opener Colin Milburn, whose career was cut tragically short by an eye injury sustained in a car crash; the reliable batsmen David Steele and Rob Bailey; opening batsman Wayne Larkins; and all-rounders Peter Willey and David Capel.

Several notable overseas players such as Matthew Hayden, Curtly Ambrose, André Nel, Kapil Dev, Mike Hussey, Sarfraz Nawaz, Mushtaq Mohammad, Anil Kumble, Dennis Lillee and Bishen Bedi have starred for the club, which was particularly formidable as a one-day batting outfit in the late 1970s and early 1980s. More recently, Lance Klusener and Monty Panesar have been notable players.

Northants have recently been criticised for the number of Kolpak players in the team, but for the 2009 season there were only three in Andrew Hall, Johan van der Wath and Nicky Boje, and only one in 2013 in Hall.

Ground history

County Ground.

As with all county cricket clubs, Northamptonshire CCC represents the historic county and not any modern or current administrative unit. In Northamptonshire's case, this means the county of Northamptonshire and the Town of Northampton, although the club have in the past played some home matches outside the historic borders such as in Luton and Milton Keynes.

Northamptonshire first played at the county ground in Northampton in 1905, and continue to do so till this day even though Northampton Town F.C. shared the ground up until 1994 when the Cobblers moved to Sixfields Stadium. After the football club moved, the ground at the Abington Avenue was demolished and replaced by a new indoor school which includes seating looking on to the ground. In 2009, Northants cricket announced plans to improve the ground by building two new stands on the scoreboard side of the ground, there will also be a permanent commentary box with a view to have a 'mini Lord's' style media centre.

This following table gives details of every venue at which Northamptonshire have hosted a first-class, List A or Twenty20 cricket match:

Name of ground Location Year FC
matches
LA
matches
T20
matches
Total
County Ground Northampton 1905–present 969 341 17 1327
Town Ground Kettering 1923–1973 65 4 – 69
School Ground Wellingborough 1946–1991 43 17 – 60
Town Ground Peterborough 1906–1966 46 – – 46
Wardown Park Luton 1973–2004 11 24 1 36
Town Ground Rushden 1924–1963 22 – – 22
Tring Park Tring 1974–1991 – 16 – 16
Manor Fields Bletchley 1976–1987 3 7 – 10
Baker Perkins Peterborough 1967–1974 3 5 – 8
Campbell Park Milton Keynes 1997–present – 2 3 5
Buckingham Road Brackley 1971–1975 – 4 – 4
Dolben Ground Finedon 1986–1989 – 3 – 3
Bedford School Bedford 1971–1982 – 2 – 2
Horton House Horton 1976–1977 – 2 – 2
Ideal Clothiers Ground Wellingborough 1929 1 – – 1
Stowe School Stowe 2005 – 1 – 1
Source: CricketArchive
Updated: 6 November 2009

Current officials

  • President: The Rt Hon. the Lord Naseby
  • Chairman: Gavin Warren
  • Chief Executive: Ray Payne
  • Scorer: Tony Kingston
  • Head Groundsman: Craig Harvey

Coaching staff

  • Head Coach: David Ripley
  • Assistant Coach John Sadler
  • Academy Director Kevin Innes
  • Performance Coach/Fielding and 2nd XI Coach:
  • Bowling Coach: Chris Liddle
  • Performance Cricket Coach: Luke Swann
  • Head Physiotherapist/Science and Medicine Lead Coach: Barry Goudriaan
  • Head Strength and Conditioning Coach: Chris Lorkin

Players

Current squad

The Northamptonshire squad for the 2021 season consists of (this section could change as players are released or signed):

  • No. denotes the player's squad number, as worn on the back of their shirt.
  • double-dagger denotes players with international caps.
  •  *  denotes a player who has been awarded a county cap.
No. Name Nationality Birth date Batting Style Bowling Style Notes
Batsmen
4 Josh Cobb*  England (1990-08-17) 17 August 1990 (age 30) Right-handed Right-arm off break Captain (T20)
8 Alex Wakely*  England (1988-11-03) 3 November 1988 (age 31) Right-handed Right-arm off break
19 Emilio Gay  England (2000-04-30) 30 April 2000 (age 20) Left-handed Right-arm medium
21 Rob Keogh*  England (1991-10-21) 21 October 1991 (age 28) Right-handed Right-arm off break
57 Ben Curran  England (1996-06-07) 7 June 1996 (age 24) Left-handed Right-arm off break
88 Richard Levi* double-dagger  South Africa (1988-01-14) 14 January 1988 (age 32) Right-handed Right-arm medium UK Passport
96 Charlie Thurston  England (1996-08-17) 17 August 1996 (age 24) Right-handed Right-arm medium
All-rounders
2 Luke Procter*  England (1988-06-14) 14 June 1988 (age 32) Left-handed Right-arm medium
13 Gareth Berg  Italy (1981-01-18) 18 January 1981 (age 39) Right-handed Right-arm medium
18 Saif Zaib  England (1998-05-22) 22 May 1998 (age 22) Left-handed Slow left-arm orthodox
— Tom Taylor  England (1994-12-21) 21 December 1994 (age 25) Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium
Wicket-keepers
7 Adam Rossington*  England (1993-05-05) 5 May 1993 (age 27) Right-handed — Captain (FC)
27 Ricardo Vasconcelos  South Africa (1997-10-27) 27 October 1997 (age 22) Left-handed — Portuguese passport
Bowlers
9 Jack White  England (1992-02-19) 19 February 1992 (age 28) Left-handed Right-arm fast-medium
11 Nathan Buck  England (1991-04-26) 26 April 1991 (age 29) Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium
20 Brandon Glover double-dagger  Netherlands (1997-04-03) 3 April 1997 (age 23) Right-handed Right-arm fast
26 Ben Sanderson*  England (1989-01-03) 3 January 1989 (age 31) Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium
87 Graeme White  England (1987-04-18) 18 April 1987 (age 33) Right-handed Slow left-arm orthodox List A & T20 only
— Simon Kerrigan double-dagger  England (1989-05-10) 10 May 1989 (age 31) Right-handed Slow left-arm orthodox

Notable players

This list is compiled of international cricketers who have played Test and/or ODI cricket. It also includes players who have been mentioned in the '100 Greats: Northamptonshire County Cricket Club' book.[17] Therefore, making them notable to the county and international cricket scene.

County captains

A complete list of officially appointed Northamptonshire captains can be found here: List of Northamptonshire cricket captains.

Notable captains:

County caps

Northamptonshire do not automatically award caps to players on their first appearance; instead, they have to be 'earned' through good performances. In recent times, cricketers who are awarded a county cap are given a new cap with yellow stripes on the maroon instead of a plain maroon cap. The following players have received caps:

Copyright