Tremain 'just loves taking wickets' as Australian ace shines for Northants

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Northamptonshire all-rounder Rob Keogh hailed 'brilliant' Chris Tremain after the Australian pace ace continued to give his side the upper hand against Middlesex.

Tremain took three for 34 in the first innings as Middlesex were bowled out for just 149.

And he then took three for 41 in the second innings as the away side were dismissed for 167.

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With Keogh hitting a crucial 75 not out in Northants' first-innings 198 all out, it means the hosts are closing in on victory at the County Ground.

Chris TremainChris Tremain
Chris Tremain

John Sadler's side will need 89 runs to win on the final day as they are currently 30 for one.

And Keogh said: "The way the day started, they clawed their way back into it under the cloud cover with the ball swinging and nipping about.

"We just knew that any lead with our bowling attack and the bit of movement there is in the wicket was always going to be helpful.

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"To get a lead of near enough 50 always helps, especially when you get a couple of early ones and they are still in the minus position before you've even got going.

"We set our sights to try to bat long, but they bowled well this morning and gained momentum, but that made my position pretty clear that I had to try to get us as many runs as possible to play with, so have a bit of a hack and try to show the lads I can hit sixes as I don't hit many.

"That first one was probably the biggest I've hit, so I did like that, I'm not going to lie.

"Higgo (Ryan Higgins) is a good friend of mine and said afterwards if he was facing me he was going to get me back, so I'm glad I didn't have to bowl to him.

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"To be fair, it is hard to get the ball out of Chris Tremain's hands. He loves bowling and trucking in. He really does try to put serious effort in.

"I think he's got 300 first-class wickets now and he just loves taking wickets.

"He has been brilliant the last two games and it's a shame he can't stay any longer."

Middlesex head coach Richard Johnson said: "It's been another tough day and we're having a few of those at the moment.

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"I thought we started the day really nicely, pegged them back, got the wickets and restricted them to a slender lead.

"We started okay with the bat and then found things tough again. They bowled very well at us, but we've given away a few of our wickets in a low scoring game which doesn't help.

"We will come out fighting again tomorrow and try our hardest to get those nine wickets.

"If you'd asked us day one when we looked at the wicket, I don't think anyone would have seen this type of wicket which has been really difficult to bat on.

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"At times it can look like it's quite simple and then all of a sudden it does a bit or skids on.

"But we've got to get better at coping with that as well. It's something we did really well last season when we didn't collapse too many times. We fought our way through those situations and we have just lost a little bit of that at the moment.

"We need to find that quickly, but we are seven days into a long season and we don't want to get too depressed about everything.

"It's not great when you are not doing well and not winning games, but we've a lot to play for and we'll keep fighting hard."