County Championship: Rob Keogh century helps Northants take charge at Worcester

Worcestershire fast bowler Ed Barnard
Worcestershire's Ed Barnard was the man who finally removed Rob Keogh, running him out from mid off
Specsavers County Championship Division Two, New Road, day one
Northamptonshire 345-6: Keogh 154, Crook 84*
Worcestershire: Yet to bat
Northamptonshire 3 pts, Worcestershire 2 pts
Scorecard

Northamptonshire batsman Rob Keogh made his first century in 15 months to help his side enjoy the better of the first day against Worcestershire after losing the toss and being put in at New Road.

Keogh made 154, sharing a stand of 159 for the sixth wicket with Steven Crook just as the hosts were rallying.

After lunching on 91-2, Northants lost three wickets in 15 overs, yet ended up plundering 155 runs in the session.

Keogh was run out by Ed Barnard before Crook (84*) reached the close at 345-6.

Having earlier come through a sticky patch, the Northants centurion's effort, only his fifth Championship hundred, was finally ended when Barnard, Worcestershire's most successful bowler with 2-78 from 22 overs, swooped from mid-off as the batsmen went for a sharp single.

Worcestershire began the game fourth in Division Two, 34 points adrift of leaders Essex, and 24 ahead of eighth-placed Northants, in their first appearance since winning the T20 Blast late on Saturday night.

Worcestershire assistant coach Matt Mason told BBC Hereford & Worcester:

"If we are going to get 20 wickets in this game, we have to make best use of time, so we put them in. However their hopes of controlling the game that way were scuppered by Keogh.

"He's a useful cricketer. He has a very simple game. He likes to drive and he likes to pull, so you have to be bang on with your length.

"It's a good surface and they are full of confidence. They've had a win in the T20 and came out quite aggressively."

Northants century-maker Rob Keogh told BBC Radio Northampton:

"I'm very pleased. It's been a while. I haven't scored runs since last year. I have come close a few times, at Arundel and 50 last week, so it's just nice to get it off my chest.

"I'm enjoying my cricket at the moment. It was a tough start to the season with my back injury and coming back into the side, not feeling in great nick.

"But the boys are confident, we've just won finals day, and there's a buzz and everyone is enjoying everybody's company. It was a good day for us."

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