Vasconcelos in confident mood as Northants gear up for Lancashire showdown

Northants have named a 12-man squad for their LV= Insurance County Championship clash with high-flying Lancashire at the County Ground.

Wednesday, 19th May 2021, 5:31 pm
Updated Wednesday, 19th May 2021, 5:32 pm
Northants batsman Ricardo Vasconcelos

Head coach David Ripley has selected the 11 that performed superbly to see off Sussex by an innings and 120 runs in their most recent fixture, and added former Lancashire spinner Simon Kerrigan to the mix.

It's a big day for everyone at the club, as it will be the first time that supporters have been allowed into the County Ground since September, 2019.

Northants were without a fixture last weekend and dropped to fourth in the Group 3 table as a result, but they know that a win over the second-placed Red Rose will put them right in the frame a top two finish.

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The County are halfway through their 10-match group campaign, and in-form opening batsman Ricardo Vasconcelos is looking forward to taking on their visitors from Old Trafford.

"Every game now is going to be a big game," said Vasconcelos. "Lancashire are a very good team, and they won division two the year we got promoted.

"They did very well last summer, and they are doing very well again this year, so it would obviously be really nice to get one over on them.

"We haven't beaten them since I have been here, so it would be nice to tick that box."

The County fell just 13 painful overs short of claiming a draw when the two sides met in Manchester last month, and they then went on to suffer a heartbreaking one-run loss at Yorkshire.

That one in particular really hurt everybody in the Northants camp, but they hit back to smash Sussex in their most recent game and that, says Vasconcelos, proves the team have got it out of theirt system.

"The way we bounced back against Sussex showed where we are as a group mentally," he said.

"We knew how close we had come to winning the game at Yorkshire, and also to drawing in the match up at Lancashire, and if they had gone our way we know it would have been a very different story with the table.

"But we know we have got it, and hopefully we can turn a couple of those sides over when they come here."

Play starts at the County Ground at 11am on Thursday.

Northamptonshire squad to play Lancashire: Adam Rossington (c/wk); Gareth Berg; Ben Curran; Rob Keogh; Simon Kerrigan; Wayne Parnell; Luke Procter; Ben Sanderson; Tom Taylor; Charlie Thurston; Ricardo Vasconcelos; Saif Zaib