LV= County Championship Division Two: Northants crush Essex

Last Updated: 19/04/13 4:24pm

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David Willey took five wickets as Northamptonshire completed an emphatic innings-and-nine-run victory over Essex inside three days.

Resuming on 94-2 in their second innings, the visitors were bowled out for 207 at Wantage Road, with only Rob Quiney and England's Ravi Bopara providing any resistance with knocks of 56 and 41 respectively.

Willey followed up his batting heroics from the second day with superb figures of 5-67 from 22 overs as Northants wrapped up their first win of the LV= County Championship Division Two season before tea.

Quiney was first out, edging a leg-side delivery from Willey to wicketkeeper David Murphy and the wickets fell at regular intervals thereafter.

Night-watchman Maurice Chambers spent 75 minutes at the crease, although he only made three off 65 balls before his off stump was taken out by Steven Crook.

Essex were then plunged further into trouble when David Sales took a brilliant one-handed catch to his right to dismiss Mark Pettini (five) off South Africa all-rounder Andrew Hall to reduce the visitors to 133-5.

Following lunch, the visitors lost their captain and wicketkeeper James Foster for 11 in the fourth over of the afternoon when he nudged Willey to Hall at first slip.

Greg Smith was next out, caught and bowled by Willey, and the 23-year-old seamer then completed his fourth five-wicket haul in first-class cricket when Bopara edged a terrific delivery behind to Murphy.

Any chance of making Northants bat again disappeared when Graham Napier (13) launched Hall to Crook, who took an easy catch at extra cover.

Crook then finished off proceedings when he sent Tymal Mills' middle stump tumbling, meaning Northants come away from this one-sided encounter with 23 points and Essex just three.

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