Ripley pleased to see Levi fire at the top as Steelbacks prepare for Somerset

David Ripley

David Ripley

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Northamptonshire head coach David Ripley believes overseas signing Richard Levi has now shown what a good player he is.

The South African crafted an excellent match-winning hundred against Gloucestershire yesterday to set a Steelbacks victory.

It took the Steelbacks level with Glamorgan at the top of the Midlands, Wales & West group.

Now, with the games coming thick and fast, they prepare to take on Somerset at home tonight looking to continue their fine form in the competition.

And, with Levi finding his touch at the top of the order, Ripley is hopeful of seeing more class from the Twenty20 international batsman.

“That’s what Richard does,” Ripley said of the knock at Cheltenham. “He’s a very dangerous player.

“It’s never a given that you are going to score some runs up front.

“When you do, if you’ve got someone like him, he is the sort of player that is going to win games for you.

“I’m really pleased for him.

“He’s at a new club and wants to impress.

“He’s fitted in really well and I’m very pleased for him that he’s been able to make that match-winning contribution.

“He paced it well. He hit a few sixes and they help.

“He actually played fairly conservatively to start off with but then that push at the end was exactly what we needed.

“It’s great for him that he has been able to show what he can do.”

Ripley was also pleased with the opening bowling effort against Gloucestershire after a poor start in their previous game.

But, with the hosts recovering to get a bit closer to the target than the Steelbacks would have liked, the coach is looking for a more complete display with the ball in tonight’s match against Somerset.

He added: “We started well in the field at Cheltenham - which we didn’t do against Glamorgan.

“We were very good up front against Gloucestershire.

“But then we didn’t quite hit our areas in the middle parts and at the death - and, fair play to them, they kept coming at us.

“We didn’t quite hit our yorkers and we got a few decisions wrong about what to bowl.

“That can happen sometimes but it’s something to work on.”