Northants star branded “old f***” in brutal sledging from Yorkshire


Gareth Berg has revealed he was brutally sledged by Yorkshire while helping Northamptonshire earn a draw in their County Championship match

Northamptonshire star Gareth Berg
Northamptonshire star Gareth Berg

Northamptonshire all-rounder Gareth Berg has revealed he was called an “old f***” and told to retire while attempting to earn his side a hard-fought draw in their County Championship clash against Yorkshire.

Berg survived ten balls in Northamptonshire’s second innings, helping them save the game alongside wicket-keeper Lewis McManus, who made an unbeaten 62. Yorkshire had declared on 406-3 on day three with a lead of 498 and 120 overs to try and bowl their way to victory.

However, Northamptonshire were able to earn a draw, ending the match with three wickets in hand after dogged efforts from New Zealand star Will Young, Rob Keogh and McManus. Young fell just four runs short of a brilliant century, while Keogh made a steadfast 48.

Australian quick Matt Kelly also faced a crucial 61 balls as he made 42, while McManus saw off 141 deliveries to guide his side to safety. He was joined by Berg for the final few overs of the game and, with Yorkshire pushing for a win, the veteran all-rounder copped some brutal sledging.

Taking to Twitter after the match, the 41-year-old, who picked up a five-wicket haul in the first innings, wrote: “Yesterday… trying to save the game, it’s been a long time since I’ve been chirped by a bowler! ‘Just retire you old f$€k’ ‘You’re a clubby’

“Fair to say I enjoyed it and had a few choice words back! Gotta love championship cricket”

Reflecting on the draw, Young said: “We wanted to show some character and fight, to get something out of the game and I’m glad I played a part in getting the draw. There were also plenty of other guys in the team that stepped up and made really valuable contributions towards that.

“We’re happy to come away with a hard-fought draw. Breaking it down into chunks helped. Our batting coach Ben Smith talked about 20-minute slots. We had a whiteboard and just crossed those off as they went by.

“Yorkshire bowled really well and threw all sorts at us. You’ve got to keep yourself mentally fresh somehow and ticking off little things like that helps.”

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