Ackerman hundred drives Leicestershire
Leicestershire 268 for 6 (Ackerman 139) beat Northamptonshire 261 for 8 (O'Brien 95, Cummins 2-35) by seven runs
Leicestershire continued their excellent start to the Friends Provident Trophy with their third win in four matches, seeing off Northamptonshire by the slender margin of seven runs at Northampton. Chasing 269, Niall O'Brien cracked 95 from 108 and Johann Louw nearly took the home side to a nail-biting victory with a blistering 36, but Northamptonshire ran out of overs.
In a match dominated by 11 South African Kolpak players, Leicestershire's 268 for 6 was set-up by HD Ackerman's career-best 139 from 150 balls, and he dominated the five partnerships in which he featured. He and Tom New (14) put on 49 for the first wicket after a slow start, while Jim Allenby (21) helped Ackerman put on 62 for the second. Boeta Dippenaar scored the next highest score with a meagre 23, but it was Ackerman who continued to bolster Leicestershire's innings with a slick 119-ball century that included 12 fours, including four off one Lance Klusener over.
Northamptonshire's chase began poorly. Ryan Cummins (2 for 35) produced a fine opening spell, with Stephen Peters (1), Andrew Hall (6) and David Sales (1) falling in quick succession to leave the hosts struggling on 46 for 3. And when Claude Henderson removed Nicky Boje, stumped for 19, Northamptonshire had stumbled to 98 for 5. O'Brien wasn't finished though, and found good support in Lance Klusener (42 from 67) with whom he put on 76 for the sixth wicket. However, Nadeem Malik dismissed O'Brien five short of his century to pick up his second wicket - brilliantly caught by Cummins at deep midwicket - while Klusener fell to Garnett Kruger - who conceded a miserly 38 in his 10 overs - for 42.
Louw smacked four fours and a six in his 26-ball 35, and Monty Panesar gave his home fans some entertainment with two late boundaries but Northamptonshire fell seven runs shy.