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Ryan Bailey at Derby
May 29, 2014
Derbyshire v Northamptonshire Match abandoned
Such has been the unrelenting nature of the rain over the past 72 hours, a combination of a sharp breeze and the dogged efforts of the ground staff were inexorable in preventing Derbyshire's Natwest T20 Blast fixture against Northamptonshire from becoming the latest victim of this grim week of weather.
It was the fifth consecutive day at Derby hampered by the weather after their Championship match against Gloucestershire was badly rain-affected and ended in a tame draw.
Umpires Neil Banton and Peter Hartley were uneasy over several wet patches on the outfield - either side of the pitch - after it was left saturated by the persistent rain that has hit much of the country over the past few days.
Although players from both sides shuttled between the nets and the dressing rooms - bookended by fleeting ventures out to the middle - the inevitable decision came following a third inspection at 6.40pm; ten minutes after the scheduled start time.
The square towards the pavilion side of the ground was the area of concern and although the persistent rain had abated early in the afternoon, the decision was made in light of player safety.
Although the abandonment will hurt Derbyshire's coffers - ticket sales were reportedly healthy for a fixture boosted by the presence of the TV cameras - a no result ensures they're up and running in this season's competition after back-to-back defeats.
The disappointment was shared by both sides despite the share of the spoils ensuring Northants moved to the summit of the North Group. The defending champions have won thirteen of their last fifteen completed games in the shortest format, so the intervention of the weather here was an unwanted outcome from their short hop down the M1.
If there is one comfort Northants can take on the return journey, their unbeaten start to their defence remains intact.
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