|County:||Northamptonshire County Cricket Club|
|Overseas:||Johan van der Wath|
|Ground:||County Ground, Northampton|
Northamptonshire County Cricket Club is one of the 18 major county clubs which make up the English domestic cricket structure, representing the historic county of Northamptonshire. Its limited overs team is called the Northants Steelbacks.
The club plays the majority of its games at the County Cricket Ground, Northampton, but has used outlier grounds at Kettering, Wellingborough, Finedon and Peterborough (formerly considered part of Northamptonshire, but now in Cambridgeshire) in the past. It has also used grounds outside the county, at Luton, Tring and Milton Keynes, for one-day games. The club's coach is David Capel.
The club's groundsman is Paul Marshall.
Division Two (1) - 2000
Most first-class runs for Northamptonshire
Qualification - 20000 runs http://www.cricketarchive.com/Archive/Records/England/Firstclass/Northamptonshire/Batting_Records/Most_Career_Runs.html
Most first-class wickets for Northamptonshire
Qualification - 800 wickets http://www.cricketarchive.com/Archive/Records/England/Firstclass/Northamptonshire/Bowling_Records/Most_Career_Wickets.html
Highest Total For - 781-7 declared v Nottinghamshire at Northampton 1995
Lowest Total For - 12 v Gloucestershire at Gloucester 1907
Lowest Total Against - 33 by Lancashire at Northampton 1977
Highest Score - 331* M.E.K.Hussey v Somerset at Taunton 2003
Most Runs in Season - 2198 D. Brookes in 1952
Most Runs in Career - 28,980 D. Brookes 1934-1959
Best Partnership for each wicket
1st - 375 RA White and MJ Powell v Gloucestershire at Northampton 2002
2nd - 344 G Cook and RJ Boyd-Moss v Lancashire at Northampton 1986
3rd - 393 A Fordham and AJ Lamb v Yorkshire at Leeds 1990
9th - 156 R Subba Row and S Starkie v Lancashire at Northampton 1955
10th - 148 BW Bellamy and JV Murdin v Glamorgan at Northampton 1925
Best Bowling - 10-127 VWC Jupp v Kent at Tunbridge Wells 1932
Best Match Bowling - 15-31 GE Tribe v Yorkshire at Northampton 1958
Wickets in Season - 175 GE Tribe in 1955
Wickets in Career - 1097 EW Clark 1922-1947
Cricket had probably reached Northamptonshire by the end of the 17th century and the first two references to cricket in the county are within a few days of each other in 1741. On Monday 10 August, there was a match at Woburn Park between a Bedfordshire XI and a combined Northants and Huntingdonshire XI (see H T Waghorn: Cricket Scores 1730 - 1773). Woburn Cricket Club under the leadership of the Duke of Bedford was on the point of becoming a well known club. On Tuesday 18 August, a match played on the Cow Meadow near Northampton between two teams of amateurs from Northants and Bucks is the earliest known instance of cricket being played in Northamptonshire county.
On 31 July 1878, the official formation of Northants CCC took place at a meeting in the George Hotel, Kettering based on existing organisation that dated back to 1820. The 1820 date if it could be verified would make Northants the oldest club in the present-day County Championship.
The club came to prominence in the Minor Counties Championship during the 1890s and, between 1900 and 1904, the bowling of George Thompson and William East was much too good for almost all batsmen at that level. The county applied for first-class status in 1904 and was promoted the following year when it joined the County Championship.
Northants CCC played its initial first-class match versus Hampshire CCC at Southampton on 18, 19 & 20 May 1905 to make its County Championship debut.
Though Thompson and East proved themselves bowlers of high class, feebleness in batting kept the county close to the bottom until Sydney Smith arrived in 1909. After three years in the middle of the table, they made a surprising jump to second in 1912 and fourth in 1913. Thompson, Smith and William "Bumper" Wells were one of the best attacks in county cricket, whilst Smith and Haywood were the county's best batsmen.
Thompson and Smith disappeared after World War I, however, and Northamptonshire were then consistently among the weakest counties, with their batting in particular lacking any class. Even when players of the calibre of Vallance Jupp, Nobby Clark and Fred Bakewell arrived during the 1920s, the county could, due to a complete lack of depth in batting, finished above second last only four times between 1923 and 1948. Matters got even worse when Jupp and Clark aged and Bakewell's career was destroyed by a car accident. The county finished last every year from 1934 to 1938 and went ninety-nine matches from 14 May 1935 to 29 May 1939 without a single County Championship victory.
After the Second World War, Northamptonshire was quicker than many other counties to adapt to a more professional game. After more bad years in the late 1940s, it recruited widely and wisely from other counties and other countries, bringing in the one-time England captain Freddie Brown from Surrey, the Australians Jock Livingston, George Tribe and Jack Manning, the New Zealander Peter Arnold, and the Cambridge University opening bat and leg-spinner Raman Subba Row. Dennis Brookes was a stalwart batsman for over 20 years. Though the tearaway Ashes-winning fast bowler Frank Tyson was, through injury, rarely able to sustain continuous county cricket, Northamptonshire was among the leading counties in the late 1950s. The club's best wicket-keeper was Keith Andrew who went on tour with England to Australia but did not play in a Test Match there, though he was capped twice in other series.
Later years have proved more mixed: though the club has had intermittent success in one-day competitions, it has not yet won the Championship. The team finished second in each of 1957, 1965 and 1976. Nonetheless it has produced several famous players qualified for England including the South African-born Allan Lamb who scored three centuries against the mighty 1984 West Indians, Tyson's equally injury-prone successor David Larter, the hard hitting Colin Milburn, whose career was cut tragically short by an eye injury sustained in a car crash, the reliable David Steele and Rob Bailey, the punishing Wayne Larkins, the obdurate Peter Willey and all-rounder David Capel.
Several notable overseas players such as Matthew Hayden, Curtly Ambrose, Andre Nel, Kapil Dev, Mike Hussey, Sarfraz Nawaz,Mushtaq Mohammad, Anil Kumble, Dennis Lillee and Bishen Bedi have starred for the club, which was particularly formidable as a one day batting outfit in the late 1970s and early 1980s. More recently Lance Klusener and Monty Panesar have been notable players.
Under the stewardship of big-hitting batsman David Sales, Northants finished 3rd in the one-day league in 2005 and followed this up with 2nd place behind Essex in the newly named 'Pro40' league in 2006. The club signed several new players over the 2006 winter including ex-England spinner Richard Dawson from Yorkshire and South African all rounder Johan van der Wath and 2007 promised to be one of the most exciting years seen at the County Ground in recent times but didn't deliver.
The 2008 Season began badly for Northamptonshire as two of their main players in Johan van der Wath and Andrew Hall were banned due to their ICL connections, But this was then over turned and the season began as normal.
Northants have often been criticized for the amount of Kolpak players in their side but for the 2009 season they have cut down and have only two at the moment with Andrew Hall and Nicky Boje. They have now brought a lot more English youngsters from their academy such as David Murphy, Bud Bailey, Ben Howgego, Mark Nelson, Alex Wakely and Graeme White. Also, they have brought English players such as Jack Brooks, Ryan Cummins, and Lee Daggett, they hope to build on this in the future. The 2009 season will be expected to be a rebuilding year such as Derbyshire CCC have done in recent years.
The Northamptonshire squad for the 2009 season consists of (this section could change as players are released or signed):
Players with international caps are listed in bold.
|Name||Nat||Age||Batting Style||Bowling Style||Squad Number||Notes|
|Stephen Peters||30||RHB||LS||11||Former England U19|
|Alex Wakely||20||RHB||OS / RM||26||Former England U19|
|David Sales||31||RHB||RM||5||Former England A|
|Niall O'Brien||27||LHB||81||Ireland ODI Player|
|Riki Wessels||23||RHB||6||English Qualified|
|Andrew Hall||33||RHB||RFM||1||Kolpak Player|
|Nicky Boje (c)||35||LHB||SLA||17||Kolpak Player|
|Steven Crook||25||RHB||RFM||25||English Qualified|
|Mark Nelson||22||LHB||RM||21||Former England U19|
|Johan van der Wath||31||RHB||RF||24||Overseas Player|
|Graeme White||21||RHB||SLA||20||Former England U19|
|Monty Panesar||26||LHB||SLA||7||England Test Player|