Loye's day of joy

Cricket: Northamptonshire 383-9 dec Somerset 88-0

Mal Loye continued his rehabilitation yesterday with a hard-hit, fluent century in a match that has been badly affected by rain.

Only two years ago the 23-year-old right-hander seemed to be making smooth progress towards Test status. He toured South Africa with England A in 1993-4 and was regarded as one of the best young batsmen in county cricket. But last season he suffered a crisis of confidence. Unable to retain his place in a side pushing for the Championship, he played only seven matches and scored a meagre 134 runs.

Loye looked far from confident in the opening hour when Andrew Caddick, another of cricket's under-achievers, exploited the early moisture to bowl a hostile but luckless spell. Batting became considerably easier against some average seam bowling from Kevin Shine and Shane Lee.

Loye set about them with relish. He pulled anything short with dismissive ease through square leg, brought up his half-century with a cut for four off Lee and celebrated with a six over midwicket in the same over.

Lee came in for more punishment as Loye's timing kept pace with his increasing confidence. Two straight drives flashed past the hapless Australian in successive balls and Andy Hayhurst was cut, clipped and lofted for three fours in one over.

Loye was stranded on 99 at lunch but brought up his century soon afterwards with a straight driven boundary off Andrew Batty. But the off-spinner finally got his man with a flighted delivery which Loye swept at too early and was bowled.

Meanwhile Graham Rose, fresh from 13 wickets in the match against Nottinghamshire and one of the most enthusiastic appealers in the business, applied a measure of control with some probing seam and swing bowling. At one point he had figures of three for 16 off 9.3 overs in a highly effective performance spanning two spells.

But Somerset suffered more indignities as David Capel and Tony Penberthy added a quick-fire century partnership in only 16 overs. Capel was in a particularly ebullient and unconventional mood, smearing the rattled Lee for two sixes over the short square leg boundary.

With the fourth batting bonus point in the bag Robin Bailey declared at tea. Curtly Ambrose's extra pace and bounce troubled both Somerset openers but he failed to break through and with batting looking increasingly comfortable it will take some imaginative captaincy to conjure up a result tomorrow.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
a clockwork orange, stanley kubrick
The Tesco Hudl2: An exceptional Android tablet that's powerful, well-built and outstanding value

Life and Style
food + drinkAuthor DBC Pierre presents his guide to the morning after
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
Life and Style
food + drink
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
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