CRICKET: Grantham robbed of certain victory by rain

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HEAVY rain cost Grantham CC an almost certain victory as their fixture against Woodhall Spa was abandoned with Grantham needing just one more wicket to secure victory.

Grantham hit 175 for five before reducing Woodhall Spa 2nd to just 70 for nine - only for the heaven’s to open, making a continuation of the day’s play impossible.

Belvoir 1st

West Bridgford

Match abandoned

LOSING the toss could do nothing to demoralise a very determined Belvoir 1st XI Captain, as he led his team out to field against their compatriots occupying the bottom of Division A.

Rain had already reduced the overs to 35 so it was vital to dig deep and claim early wickets and it was James Keywood who, by his third over, had claimed two such prizes.

Sam Cliff bowled a miserly spell at the road end and was rewarded just an over later, whereupon 23-3 after 13 overs looked extremely promising.

Tony Wade took over from Keywood and was successful in his pursuit of a stifled run-rate, albeit without a wicket to show for it. But it was the introduction of none other than James Fellows which really got pulses racing.

After dismissing Alistair Petitt with the aid of a sound catch from Cliff, Fellows caught and bowled Chris Watkins with the very next ball. By now, Fellows was very much in the ascendant and went on to avail himself of a further two wickets.

Furthermore, he went on to become the catcher instrumental in handing a further brace to Keywood - notably West Bridgfordians’ skipper, top-scorer Oliver Straw. The tenth wicket eluded Belvoir, but as West Bridgfordians notched up a tame 133-9 after their allotted 35 overs, a victory for the home side was seemingly there for the taking.

At tea, the rain which had already claimed 16 minutes mid-game returned with more than a vengeance. The gathered crowd could only shake heads in disbelief as it became apparent that no further play would be possible.

Belvoir will undoubtedly go forward to the Unity game with reinforced self-belief. This was an inspiring and potentially match-winning performance.

Captain James Clayfield said: “It’s been a tough season for the first team but the last four weeks have seen a complete turnaround in attitude, motivation and fortunes.

“A win on Saturday could be enough to keep Belvoir in Division A.”