Sadler admits Steelbacks fell short with the bat against Outlaws

Northants Steelbacks' stand-in head coach John Sadler admitted his side were made to pay for falling short with the bat as they were beaten by Nottinghamshire Outlaws on Tuesday.

Rob Keogh
Rob Keogh

The Outlaws edged home to win by two wickets with just two balls to spare after the Steelbacks had mounted an impressive Royal London One Day Cup fightback in Grantham.

Tom Taylor’s three for 24 kept the Steelbacks in with a chance and the Outlaws needed eight off the final over bowled by Ben Sanderson.

They took two singles from three balls before fast bowler Dane Paterson smashed the pace bowler high back over his head to win the contest with a six to the delight of a good crowd on the attractive Gorse Lane ground.

Earlier, half-centuries from Ben Compton (71) and Ben Slater (53) had given substance to the Outlaws’ chase after left-arm spinner Liam Patterson-White’s List A career-best five for 19 had seen the Steelbacks bowled out for 210 in 49.5 overs.

Opener Emilio Gay hit 40 and Luke Procter 44 for the Steelbacks, but their last six wickets fell for 52 and they go out of the competition with one match remaining.

And Sadler said: "We lost wickets at regular intervals.

"We established a partnership but then lost a wicket and then when we lost five wickets in that middle period we were always fighting against it and ended up scraping up to 210 rather than being in a position to get towards 240 or 250, which we thought would be a winning score.

“If we cast our mind back a couple of days to when we played brilliantly against Somerset, we got a couple of big partnerships and that’s when you control the game but today we never quite got ahead.

"You have to remember that it is always a lot harder for the next guy coming in, especially on a club wicket.

“In the second innings, after they had a partnership for the third wicket, Tom Taylor came on with a couple of wickets and suddenly we were back in the hunt.

"I thought Rob Keogh and Saif Zaib bowled beautifully between them and got us back in the game.

"I can’t fault the lads in that respect but it goes back to that first innings, when we were 25 or 30 too short.”

Nottinghamshire have completed their fixtures and must wait for other results in the final round on Thursday to learn whether they can qualify by finishing in the top three in Group One, although with three other counties on eight points with a match in hand the odds are against them.

Nevertheless, Patterson-White couldn't have done any more to try to help his team quality, producing a superb bowling performance for the Outlaws.

“It was a bit nip and tuck, but we always back ourselves," Patterson-White said.

"For Dane to finish it the way he did was phenomenal, and it was a bit of a morale boost for the boys.

“It’s a bit different bowling at outgrounds, just because of the smaller boundary sizes, but I try not to do anything too differently.

"As long as I have my plans and execute them I’m happy.

“We have a fresh young squad, and the way people have come in and done their role is great. You saw that with Fateh. He’s still got a lot to learn – at 22 I’m still young and have a lot to learn – but he’s one for the future, a really promising young player.

“For me, it is slightly weird being one of the more experienced players in the side, but it’s a great role, and I’m enjoying it a lot.”