Captain Alex a contented man

Northants v Essex, County Ground, Wantage Road, Northampton.'Jack Brooks and David Willey.

Northants v Essex, County Ground, Wantage Road, Northampton.'Jack Brooks and David Willey.

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Alex Wakely wasn’t too disappointed with the efforts of his side on day one of the County’s four-day clash with Essex.

A half-century from Ravi Bopara enabled the visitors to close a shortened day on 138-4 but Wakely, who has taken over the captaincy role with Andrew Hall out injured, declared himself satisfied with what he had witnessed.

He said: “I thought we started well and were a bit unlucky not to have got a few more wickets early on.

“We’re fairly happy with that and if you add a couple of wickets on to that in the morning it looks a lot better and staright away you’d be on top.

“It’s always a good pitch here but we were going to bowl first. This morning the wicket had a bit of moisture in it so we weren’t too disappointed when they chose to bat.”

A couple of chances were spilled by the hosts - one to David Murphy from Bopara which should’ve been taken - which was the only black mark to go against their efforts but Wakely accepted that it’s just one of those things.

He added: “Cricket is a game of very fine margins, if you catch one of those chances it can make a big difference.

“We know these two (Bopara and James Foster) are the best players at the moment so we know if we can get rid of them quickly we can get amongst them.”

As for his first experience of senior captaincy, Wakely said that his colleagues were a big help.

He continued: “I’m only captaining a game or two so I don’t want to change things that much.

“The guys made it really easy for me, everyone knows their roles well these days so it makes it quite easy.”