Rain hampers Northants’ reply

Stephen Peters was unbeaten on 74 for Northants
Stephen Peters was unbeaten on 74 for Northants

There has been so much rain this season that it has been a surprise when a day hasn’t been interrupted.

It has either helped or hindered depending on your point of view at each downpour but no side has escaped unscathed and today it was Northamptonshire’s turn to curse their misfortune.

Nearly 40 overs were lost on day two of the game with Yorkshire, a contest that the County could really do with winning if they are to get themselves into the promotion mix.

As it was, they are still in a promising position at the halfway stage but they will have more work to do, in less time, if that eventuality is to come to pass but they definitely had the better of what play was completed.

Stephen Peters has probably lost count of the number of opening partners he’s had since arriving from Worcestershire in 2006.

In collaboration with the latest incumbent to try his hand – Kyle Coetzer – the pair had few problems in the opening stages against an attack that would be described as honest.

The new ball had little effect and it wasn’t much of a surprise when spin, in the form of Azeem Rafiq, was introduced before the first hour was out and he made the initial breakthrough when Coetzer carelessly cut to backward point.

David Sales fell five minutes before the lunch break, edging Richard Pyrah’s medium pace to second slip, which arrived with the home side marginally in the ascendancy.

The scales may have tilted slightly back towards the visitors when Alex Wakely squirted an Adil Rashid leg-break to gully and this was followed by a break for a couple of rain squalls that barely dampened the surface.

Through all of this, Peters was moving along in his usual unperturbed manner and, with Rob Newton alongside, they ate into the deficit and restored the hosts’ control of proceedings.

They were helped by the fields set for Rashid who, with three men covering the square boundaries, was unable to build any pressure and both batsmen were able to score far too freely. But you do as you’re allowed to and neither will have been complaining.

Another shower arrived, this one a touch more severe, with the County 74 in arrears and with play abandoned for the day just after five o’clock, that is how they will start on day three.