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O'Brien and Peters plunder again

Northants Cricket

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Northamptonshire opening batsmen Niall O'Brien and Stephen Peters made their second half-centuries of the game to tighten the hosts’ grip on Leicestershire on day three of the LV= County Championship Division Two match at Wantage Road.

Leicestershire were bowled out by the middle of the afternoon for 299, 100 runs behind on first innings, after Shiv Thakor made a dogged 61 from 216 balls and James Middlebrook took 3-36.

Ireland wicketkeeper O'Brien then struck 79 and Peters made 56 as Northants closed on 211 for three to extend their lead to 311.

Leicestershire began the day on 187 for six, 212 runs behind, with Thakor resuming on 30 and Wayne White on four.

White gave himself a scare in the third over of the day when he played Andrew Hall's delivery into the ground and watched the ball trickle slowly into his stumps, but the bails stayed put.

Ned Eckersley & Niall O'Brien

Niall O'Brien bettered his first-innings 70 by nine today as Northamptinshire continued their domination of Leicestershire

However, he did not survive in the Northants captain's next over when his edge gave wicketkeeper David Murphy a simple catch.

Thakor, however, completed a stubborn half-century off 181 balls as he and Claude Henderson put on 80 for the eighth wicket to ensure that Leicestershire avoided the follow-on.

The 18-year-old fell in the seventh over after lunch when he chipped Middlebrook straight to Olly Stone at extra-cover.

Two balls later, Robbie Joseph followed him back to the pavilion when he nudged Middlebrook to Murphy before Henderson reached a fifty.

Lee Daggett eventually ended Leicestershire's innings when he trapped Nathan Buck lbw, leaving 40-year-old South African Henderson unbeaten on 56.

O'Brien raced past 50 off just 62 balls during the evening and Peters then completed his half-century with a six over midwicket off Henderson.

However, a second hundred of the match eluded him as he was caught and bowled by Will Jones, who took the first wicket of his senior career to end the opening stand at 139.

Jones struck again in his next over when O'Brien smashed him to Joseph, who just about held on at deep midwicket after initially juggling the ball.

David Sales then walked on 24 when he launched Henderson high into the air and was comfortably taken by Jones at mid-on. But Alex Wakely and Rob Newton were able to survive the final four overs of the day and will resume on 20 and 26 respectively.

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