CRICKET: Grantham CC and league leaders edge away in ECB Premier

Grantham CC bowler Dan Freeman's delivery sends a Boston batsmen back to the pavilion. Photo: Toby Roberts
Grantham CC bowler Dan Freeman's delivery sends a Boston batsmen back to the pavilion. Photo: Toby Roberts
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In an eventful Readers Lincolnshire ECB Premier League weekend, it took a new 10th wicket record of 101no to prevent leaders Bracebridge Heath going down to Sleaford, and a hat trick from Will Wright to halt Spalding’s pursuit of Lindum’s modest 145 for eight.

Bracebridge and Grantham opened up a gap at the top after third placed Bourne went down to Market Deeping in a high scoring game in which 17-year-old Nick Green hit the day’s only century, and Woodhall Spa lost to Alford.

James Dobson hit 47 as Grantham overtook Boston’s 134 for the loss of four wickets, but Woodhall were all out for 128 chasing Alford’s score of 194, of which Rikki Bovey made 55 and Andrew White 78.

Andy Carter and Matt Bradley are the new record holders after Sleaford made 209 for eight, Andy Hibberd hitting 57 and Bradley taking four wickets.

Bracebridge’s reply was quickly halted with the four top batsmen going for single figures and after 25 overs, the score had reached only 59 for four.

Wickets continued to fall and at 109 for nine, when Bradley joined Carter, the current champions looked beaten. But the two bowlers had other ideas, Carter launching four sixes in his 58 from 37 balls and Bradley supporting well at the other end with 29 off 38 balls as, with seven balls of the innings to go, Bracebridge claimed one of the season’s unlikeliest victories.

At Spalding, Jonathan Miles took five wickets to restrict Lindum to 145 for eight, of which Will Wright hit 56. The home side had 23 on the board when Wright swapped bat for ball to take the first wicket and this quickly became 24 for four as Wright completed a hat trick, before taking the fifth wicket with the score on 36.

Miles put up some opposition, hitting 23, but the final wicket fell on 99, keeping Lindum in fifth place in the table.

Bourne set Deeping a much higher total, finishing on 232 for nine, Rob Bentley with 50. Deeping’s first wicket fell on 39 but that was to be Bourne’s only success as Green and Dave Sargeant put together an unbeaten second wicket stand of 193 to win the game, Green making 107 from 110 balls and Sargeant 89 from 86.

Deeping are now only 11 points off sixth place, with Alford in seventh and Boston and Louth on equal points below them.

Louth won a tight game at home to Grimsby, making 179 for eight. Grimsby fought hard, Neal Snell hitting 74, but finished 16 short of their target with nine wickets down.

Results: Boston 134, Grantham 136-4 (Dobson 57); Alford 194 (Bovey 55, A. White 78), Woodhall Spa 128; Sleaford 209-8 (Hibberd 57), Bracebridge Heath 210-9 (A. Carter 58); Lindum 145-8 (Wright 56, Miles 5-36), Spalding 99 (Wright 5-24 inc hat trick); Bourne 232-9 (R. Bentley 50), Market Deeping 233-1 (N. Green 107no, Sargeant 89no); Louth 179-8, Grimsby 163-9 (Snell 74).