County Championship: Steven Crook hits 102 not out in draw

Steven Crook
Steven Crook's unbeaten century added to his 91 in the first innings
LV= County Championship Division Two, Wantage Road
Northants 385 & 391-5: Crook 102 not out, Keogh 100; Clark 2-58
Lancashire 436: Prince 153; Kleinveldt 5-99
Match Drawn
Northants 12 pts, Lancashire 13 pts
Match scorecard

Northants all-rounder Steven Crook lit up the final day against Lancashire with his second first-class century as the game ended in a draw.

Crook smashed 102 not out off 95 balls after Rob Keogh had made 100 as the home side reached 391-5 before the captains shook hands at 16:45 BST.

Resuming nine runs behind, Stephen Peters (81) put on 125 with Keogh ahead of Crook's post-lunch fireworks.

New signing Josh Cobb also made 46 not out in a stand of 156 with Crook.

Despite overcast conditions in the morning, Lancashire's bowlers could not find a way through Peters and Keogh as Peters went past 14,000 first-class runs.

When Keogh was eventually removed just after reaching his hundred, the lead was already at 184 and Crook's explosive innings made sure there would be no chase for Lancashire's batsmen in the afternoon.

Crook and Cobb's partnership was also a sixth-wicket record for Northants against Lancashire.

Lancashire now lead the early Division Two table with two wins and a draw, while Northants are also unbeaten and sit in second.

Lancashire captain Steven Croft:

"It was always going to be hard to force a result, especially losing time out of the game.

"It was a good wicket. They posted a decent score (in the first innings), and we did really well to get past them from the situation we were in, especially early season when you think we'd lose a few sessions to rain, we're happy.

"I think we're in a great spot. Hopefully we can stay up there."

Northamptonshire captain Alex Wakely:

"There was a lot of pleasing aspects taken from that game.

"We've played so many games against the bigger counties over the last few years and they expect to roll us over. We were always going to put up a big fight. We wanted to prove a point.

"In the first innings, we blunted Lancashire. We gave them nothing and most of the chances in the first innings they had to get us out."

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