Rob Keogh top-scores for Northamptonshire in five-wicket win
Northamptonshire 141 for 5 (Keogh 34*) beat Leicestershire 138 (Steel 44) by five wickets
Northamptonshire Steelbacks climbed above Leicestershire Foxes at the bottom of the North Group with a comfortable five-wicket win in the Vitality Blast.
Having opted to bat first, the Foxes struggled after being reduced to 25 for 3 in four overs against the Steelbacks spinners on a hybrid pitch.
Left-armer Graeme White dismissed Josh Inglis to a catch at deep midwicket for 12 after his unbeaten century at Wantage Road 10 days ago. Josh Cobb removed Lilley in similar fashion and held a return catch from Colin Ackermann in the same over.
Swindells, recalled with Louis Kimber self-isolating over a Covid contact, made his presence felt, hitting three consecutive sixes in innovative style off the pace of Wayne Parnell, but was stumped – at the second attempt – as White moved one ahead of David Willey in the Steelbacks’ all-time list for the competition with 72 wickets.
A catch by White at long-on gave Heldreich his second reward as Rishi Patel perished, Ben Mike thick-edged to backward point, Tom Taylor bowled Steel with a full delivery and Parnell picked up two wickets in the last over.
Spin was less effective for the Foxes as the Steelbacks chalked off 44 of the required 139 in their Powerplay, the two wickets lost coming from consecutive deliveries by Afghan paceman Naveen-ul-Haq, who had Ben Curran caught at mid-on with a slower ball before dismissing Vasconcelos via a brilliant diving catch by ‘keeper Inglis.
By halfway the Steelbacks needed just 53 more. Cobb, who hit sixes off Naveen and Callum Parkinson, was caught at wide long-off for 28, Nabi sliced to backward point and Parnell was smartly caught behind on the leg side but Zaib’s clean hitting meant the result was never in doubt.