County Championship: Northants stay on top against Yorkshire

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Saif Zaib (left) bats for Northants
Saif Zaib’s half-century came at a time when Northants had been on the back foot
County Championship Group Three, Emerald Headingley, Leeds (day two):
Yorkshire 206 & 43-3: Lyth 27; Berg 1-0
Northants 234: Zaib 55, Taylor 50; Patterson 3-35, Willey 3-43
Yorkshire (4pts) lead Northants (4pts) by 15 runs
Scorecard

Northants took three late wickets after earning a slender first-innings lead to remain on top against Yorkshire.

With a 28-run first-innings deficit, Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Adam Lyth and Will Fraine fell as the Tykes closed 43-3.

Resuming on 36-0 after dismissing the hosts for 206, Northants lost Ricardo Vasconcelos for 47 and were 81-5 as Steven Patterson took three scalps.

Half-centuries from Saif Zaib (55) and Tom Taylor (50) helped them reach 234 before Yorkshire wickets fell.

The home side have a 15-run lead with seven wickets in hand and are likely to need a big innings from either Gary Ballance (8 not out) or skipper Patterson if they are to avoid a first defeat by Northants at Emerald Headingley since 1990.

When the in-form Vasconcelos edged Patterson to first slip and Northants lost four wickets for five runs before lunch Yorkshire could sense a first-innings lead.

But Zaib’s fourth first-class fifty helped bring his side back from the brink before seeing his middle stump uprooted by David Willey, and Taylor also fell shortly after reaching his half-century – playing down the wrong line to Dom Bess.

Yorkshire batted the final 20 overs of the day, with Lyth’s edge to third slip off Gareth Berg for 27 the toughest wicket to take, just three overs before the end of the day’s play, to put Northants in a very promising position.

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