County Championship round-up: Graeme Napier sledgehammers Northampton

Batsman of the day

Graeme Napier, the 33-year-old Essex all-rounder, has missed the bus signposted international honours. If only he were a few years younger then he would be timing his dash to the Champions Trophy stop to perfection. Today he sledgehammered the Northampton attack to all parts of the County Ground and beyond on his way to an unbeaten 73 out of Essex's first-innings' total of 183. The man who once struck 152 in a Twenty20 game came to the crease with side struggling on 87 for 6. He then struck five maximums and eight boundaries – and then weighed in with three Northants wickets.

Bowler of the day

Mike Reed, Glamorgan's 24-year-old paceman, was the only bowler to pick up a five-fer on a day when wickets were shared around. Reed is playing in just his seventh first-class match and, after impressing in spells while taking three wickets against Northants last week, he came to the fore today. On a day when university bowlers were taken apart by their seniors, Reed – spotted by Glamorgan while playing for Cardiff University – can be proud that his performance vindicates a system that often makes David v Goliath look evenly matched.

Ashes watch

With Steven Finn in such fine fettle at Lord's, the pressure was on England's forgotten fast bowler Graeme Onions, who was in action for Durham against county champions Warwickshire at Edgbaston. The 30-year-old did manage the wicket of opener Varun Chopra in the 11th over but spent the rest of the day wicketless as he was upstaged by his younger team-mates Chris Rushworth and Ben Stokes. Today was a perfect opportunity for Onions to stake a claim but, even more damning than his single wicket was his return of just a single maiden in 20 overs of bowling.

Samit Patel may harbour Ashes hopes and he smashed 256 runs off 224 balls for Notts, but he loses out to Napier for batsman of the day as it was against university opposition.

Extras

It was a bad day for the former Pakistan captain Salman Butt and one-time team-mate Mohammad Asif as the Court of Arbitration for Sport rejected their appeals against the ICC bans they received in 2011 for their part in the spot-fixing scandal.Dave Richardson, the ICC chief executive, welcomed the outcome.

News
election 2015The 10 best quotes of the campaign
News
A caravan being used as a polling station in Ford near Salisbury, during the 2010 election
election 2015The Independent's guide to get you through polling day
News
people
Voices
David Blunkett joins the Labour candidate for Redcar Anna Turley on a campaigning visit last month
voicesWhat I learnt from my years in government, by the former Home Secretary David Blunkett
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
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

General Election 2015: ‘We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon’, says Ed Balls

'We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon'

In an exclusive interview, Ed Balls says he won't negotiate his first Budget with SNP MPs - even if Labour need their votes to secure its passage
VE Day 70th anniversary: How ordinary Britons celebrated the end of war in Europe

How ordinary Britons celebrated VE Day

Our perception of VE Day usually involves crowds of giddy Britons casting off the shackles of war with gay abandon. The truth was more nuanced
They came in with William Caxton's printing press, but typefaces still matter in the digital age

Typefaces still matter in the digital age

A new typeface once took years to create, now thousands are available at the click of a drop-down menu. So why do most of us still rely on the old classics, asks Meg Carter?
Discovery of 'missing link' between the two main life-forms on Earth could explain evolution of animals, say scientists

'Missing link' between Earth's two life-forms found

New microbial species tells us something about our dark past, say scientists
The Pan Am Experience is a 'flight' back to the 1970s that never takes off - at least, not literally

Pan Am Experience: A 'flight' back to the 70s

Tim Walker checks in and checks out a four-hour journey with a difference
Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics - it's everywhere in the animal world

Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics

Voting, mutual back-scratching, coups and charismatic leaders - it's everywhere in the animal world
Crisp sales are in decline - but this tasty trivia might tempt back the turncoats

Crisp sales are in decline

As a nation we're filling up on popcorn and pitta chips and forsaking their potato-based predecessors
Ronald McDonald the muse? Why Banksy, Ron English and Keith Coventry are lovin' Maccy D's

Ronald McDonald the muse

A new wave of artists is taking inspiration from the fast food chain
13 best picnic blankets

13 best picnic blankets

Dine al fresco without the grass stains and damp bottoms with something from our pick of picnic rugs
Barcelona 3 Bayern Munich 0 player ratings: Lionel Messi scores twice - but does he score highest in our ratings?

Barcelona vs Bayern Munich player ratings

Lionel Messi scores twice - but does he score highest in our ratings?
Martin Guptill: Explosive New Zealand batsman who sets the range for Kiwis' big guns

Explosive batsman who sets the range for Kiwis' big guns

Martin Guptill has smashed early runs for Derbyshire and tells Richard Edwards to expect more from the 'freakish' Brendon McCullum and his buoyant team during their tour of England
General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'