Batty beats pain for career-best figures

Northampton 177 Worcestershire 119-1

Mindful of where their strengths lie, Northamptonshire tend to prepare pitches to encourage spin but the game plan exploded in their faces after they decided to bat first here yesterday.

Mindful of where their strengths lie, Northamptonshire tend to prepare pitches to encourage spin but the game plan exploded in their faces after they decided to bat first here yesterday.

The off-spin combination of Jason Brown and Graeme Swann may yet have some say in shaping this contest but the opening day belonged squarely to Worcestershire's matching pair of Gareth Batty and Shaftab Khalid.

The latter duo's off breaks accounted for nine wickets, Batty with career-best figures of 7-52, despite suffering nerve pain in his spinning finger.

It is unusual for slow bowlers to dominate an opening day as they did, but the surface could hardly be described as explosive. Batty turned some deliveries sharply but it was able rather than assisted bowling and Northamptonshire's batting was not blameless. Indeed, given that Worcestershire then reached 119 in reply for the loss of only Stephen Moore, the pitch can be absolved.

It started well enough for the home side, openers Tim Roberts and Tom Huggins sharing a solid partnership of 58. But Batty, introduced after 38 minutes, struck in his third over, bowling Roberts on the back foot, and thereafter it was largely downhill.

Martin van Jaarsfeld was caught off bat and pad and Huggins, having completed a half-century containing five fours and two sixes, was lured down the track and stumped. David Sales fell first ball and although Swann survived Batty's hat-trick attempt it was not long before an ill-judged clip had him caught at mid-wicket.

Only Usman Afzaal stayed long amid the carnage but he was tempted into a fatal hook by Matt Mason, the only successful seamer.

Success for Brown in his third over, when Moore popped up a catch at short leg, raised expectations of similar damage being inflicted on the visitors but by the close Stephen Peters was unbeaten on 63 and as Graeme Hick was still with him, Worcestershire expect to build a decent lead today.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas
La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
10 best high-end laptops

10 best high-end laptops

From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

Homeless Veterans campaign

Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

Meet Racton Man

Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

Garden Bridge

St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

Joint Enterprise

The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

Freud and Eros

Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum