Keogh dedicates record-breaking win over Surrey to departing coach Ripley
Rob Keogh dedicated Northants’ record-breaking LV= Insurance County Championship victory over Surrey to David Ripley, who is to step down from the head coach’s role at the end of the season.
On the day it was announced Ripley will be retiring from the top job after almost 10 years in charge, his players did him proud on the pitch as they saw off Surrey by two wickets in a thriller at the County Ground.
Chasing 320 to win, Northants got home in Wednesday’s final session of what was a see-saw four-day encounter, with Keogh’s superbly constructed 99 the top score.
There were also crucial innings from Luke Procter (57) and Emilio Gay (50), with teenager James Sales, making his first-class debut, hitting the winning runs.
It was the highest fourth innings run chase by Northants against Surrey in history.
The players had been informed of Ripley’s decision to stand down from a job he has held since 2012 before the start of the match on Sunday, and Keogh said: “It is obviously sad news for everybody involved.
“I have been involved with Rips throughout his whole journey as coach, from when he took over from David Capel, and it has been emotional.
“So it is great to get a win for him in the week he announces his retirement.
“I hope he enjoys whatever next, because he us a great man to have around and I have learned so much from him.”
Northants have two more Championship Division Two play-off matches this season.
On Sunday they entertain Durham at the County Ground in what will be Ripley's final home game in charge, and they then head to Essex for their final match on September 21.
The win over Surrey saw the County move up to second place in the Division Two table, which equals eighth place in the overall Championship standings.