Wakely keen on leadership challenge

Alex Wakely is relishing the challenge of leading the county in all forms of the game
Alex Wakely is relishing the challenge of leading the county in all forms of the game

Alex Wakely is relishing the chance to lead Northamptonshire in all forms of the game.

He was named County captain for the one-day format this season with Stephen Peters taking charge of the four-day activity.

But, with Peters ruled out with a broken finger, responsibility now falls on Wakely’s shoulders to maintain what has been a positive start to the LV=County Championship season.

And, while he acknowledges the loss of Peters is a huge blow, he is looking forward to the chance to take on both jobs.

“He has been absolutely brilliant this season,” Wakely said of his co-captain.

“He has led from the front both on and off the field.

“In the dressing room he is a pretty inspirational character and we are going to miss his all-round contribution – catching in the slips, form with the bat and his leadership.

“But I really enjoy captaincy and I’m really happy to try to carry on where he left off.

“I want us to keep playing that same brand of cricket that has been successful so far.

“We are probably quite different in our captaincy styles but hopefully I can keep things ticking over while he is injured so we are in good shape when he comes back.”

“It might even help my game a bit.

“I’ve not been in the form I would like with the bat and I’m one of those people who perhaps thinks a bit too much about batting.

“The captaincy gives an added challenge and more to think about than just concentrating on my own game.

“Thinking about the whole team a bit more could be a good distraction.”

And it comes at a tough time.

There is a hectic schedule for Northamptonshire over the next month with four Championship and five Yorkshire Bank Trophy matches coming up in quick succession.

It is important nothing is allowed to slip.

Wakely added: “This next part of the season is crucial.

“It is a vital part of our Championship campaign with some big games coming up.

“It is the sort of period that can decide your season.

“Also our next couple of one-day matches are even more important after the washout in Holland.

“We need to get some wins on the board if we are to keep our interest alive in that competition.”

The Steelbacks are in action against Worcestershire at New Road on Sunday before taking on Warwickshire at home the following day.