Gloucestershire Batters Make It Home in Remarkable
Gloucestershire beat Northamptonshire by six wickets at Bristol, with Miles Hammond, Tom Lace, and Graeme van Buuren leading them home in a 266-run chase. The hosts had two-and-a-half sessions to complete their comeback after dismissing Northants for just 129 in their second innings.
With 94, Hammond laid a solid foundation for the Glosters, who was then carried home by Lace’s unbeaten 67 and van Buuren’s 53 not out, his second half-century of the match. Gloucestershire had been 153 for 9 on day two, responding to 327. It was an incredible result. However, they dominated the game’s final two days, and after poor lighting had severely limited play for the previous three evenings, Nevil Road was bathed in sunshine for the conclusion.
Northants resumed on 92 for 7, with a 228-point lead. Ryan Higgins quickly trapped Tom Taylor lbw, and when Ben Sanderson edged Tom Price behind for only one, the game appeared to be over. Simon Kerrigan, on the other hand, made 27, smearing three boundaries over mid-on and pulling Price off a top edge for six.
Higgins finished with 5 for 46 after pushing at him and being bowled by one who seemed to be returning. Given what had gone before in the game, that boost to the target seemed like it would give Northants enough to bowl at, and the visitors were able to get two of the top three for cheap. When Hammond was only six, he flashed an edge through Emilio Gay’s high hands at third slip, and he went on to punch Luke Procter off the back foot and whip him over midwicket for four.
Another line has been crossed. Procter scored a half-century in 137 balls, slapping a short wide delivery through mid-off, and he and Chris Dent looked to be in good shape to take their side to tea. Dent, however, was caught behind defending against Kerrigan’s left-arm spin and fell for 26, leaving 143 in 32 overs after tea.