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CRICKET: Grantham firsts go clear at top of table

Young Will Abbot was Grantham 2nd XI's ace bowler against Bourne 2nd at Gorse Lane on Saturday. Photo: Toby Roberts
Young Will Abbot was Grantham 2nd XI's ace bowler against Bourne 2nd at Gorse Lane on Saturday. Photo: Toby Roberts

Lincs ECB Premier

Grantham 1st XI 182-9

Grimsby Town 1st XI 95

Grantham made the long journey up to Grimsby on Saturday hoping to continue their run of form to a third successive victory of the season.

Captain Dan Freeman, having won the toss, chose to bat on a typical slow and low Grimsby wicket.

Grimsby are well known as a side who know how to play at home and scoring is never easy against the opening attack of Lee Charlton and Matthew Owen. James Dobson (4) was the first to fall to Owen with his opening partner, Ross Carnelley (25), not too far behind.

Contributions from Freeman (21), Dan Webb (24), Jamie Brumby (29) and the match’s top-scorer Ben Powell (48) kept the scoreboard ticking as Grantham completed their 50 overs.

Grimsby started well in reply and took advantage of any width offered by the strike bowlers of Joe Peck (1-21) and Neel Stevenson (1-20). It was the former who made the first breakthrough, dismissing Neal Snell (16). Following a smart piece of fielding in the deep by Dobson to dismiss Jack Wilson (14), Stevenson bowled Grimsby’s Steven Crossley following a scoreless 17 balls.

With Grimsby behind the run rate, James Keast was bought on to bowl and claimed four victims for 27 runs off his 10 overs, including an incredible diving catch off his own bowling.

Following contributions with the ball from Brumby and Freeman, the match was brought to a close with Grimsby failing to make triple figures.

Now 12 points clear at the top of the table, Grantham welcome Lindum to Gorse Lane on Saturday for what is set to be a very hotly contested match.

SLBL Premier

Bourne 2nd XI 220-8

Grantham 2nd XI 122

Grantham welcomed Bourne to Gorse Lane on Saturday for a game that was sure to be a tough one and,

winning the toss, the visitors decided to bat.

Grantham opened the bowling with Danny Ashley (11-0-59-2) and a young Will Abbott, who took out the top four relatively early, but the entry of David Greenfield and Daniel Whadcock saw the runs rattle up, scoring 51 and 59 respectively.

A few more wickets began to fall with the bowling of Phil Abbot and Rahul Kumar towards the end of the innings, but Bourne had set the bar high with a massive target.

Bowling performance of the day went to young Will Abbot with figures of 12-0-42-4).

After tea, Bourne took to the field enthused and ready to defend their large total. With early wickets yet again falling, Grantham lost opener Stewart Mudie and number three Martin Parmley in quick succession, with a few following quickly behind them to leave little support for James Cameron-Clarke (15).

Keeper Rory Johnson and Max Everett tried to make a further dent, putting on 30 between them, but the total was still a long way off.

The distant target did not deter Will Abbott who put on a brilliant 22 and looked to go further until he was run out by Joshua Bentley, and so with only two batsmen remaining the large total set by Bourne proved too much.

SLBL Division One

Grantham 3rd XI 180

Timberland 1st XI 183-4

Grantham batted first and, after losing Paul Johnson early on, battled hard in the face of some tight bowling to push the score on.

Ady Wing (14) and Ian Robinson saw the innings through to drinks before Robinson was adjudged LBW for a flowing 44. The lower order contributed well with Jaden Fell, Steve Wilson, Louis Greetham, Lewis Bromfield and Matt Webb all registering double figures.

Timberland’s experienced openers punished anything loose and Grantham struggled to put Timberland under any pressure, eventually chasing down the total in the 37th over.

SLBL Division Two

Pinchbeck 1st XI 283-3

Grantham 4th 77

Grantham travelled with a team of 10 – and a young 10 at that.

Pinchbeck were able to take full advantage of the gaps and got off to a flyer. However, Grantham stuck to the task and, with a sterling 12-over spell from Mason Hildreth (1-86), were able to stem the flow.

But chances were few and far between with the openers were both on for centuries. It took the intervention of George Dudley to make the first breakthrough. Hildreth quickly followed up and then a strong throw from Nick Fruin sent the other opener back to the pavilion, run out.

When it came to batting, Grantham missed out on taking advantage of a great batting track and slumped to 77 all out. Joe Starbuck was unfortunate to be out LBW for 16 with a tight decision, and Ethan Milne (24) showed some middle order resistance along with Dudley (13).

Rutland League

Kings Keys 1st XI 184

Grantham Sunday 1st XI 185-2

Motivated by the lacklustre efforts of the previous week, Grantham were keen to make amends against Kings Keys at home.

The visitors won the toss and chose to bat first. A steady start for Shokat Ali (5) and Muhammad Raheel (37) was bought crashing to a halt when Neel Stevenson took a hat-trick in the sixth over of the game. Kings Keys batted bravely but wickets fell at regular intervals from then on.

Tanvir Hussain was the standout performance of the innings, scoring 102 runs in just 87 balls.

Grantham started confidently with openers Ben Powell (20) and James Dobson (82no) combining for an opening stand of 50 runs. Jamie Brumby (51) then took guard and batted brilliantly alongside Dobson for a stand of more than 100.

Matthew Wing (7no) helped guide his side to a comprehensive victory .

GMCA Division Three

Grantham Sunday 2nd XI 191-8

Skillington 1st XI 191-4

Skillington arrived at Gorse Lane on the best day of the year so far, for a game of cricket that was sure to entertain the crowds with their picnics.

A young side put out by Grantham was led by example, with captain Johnny Kennedy-Short winning the toss and deciding to bat. This appeared to be a great decision, as the opening pair of Alex Hackney (64) and Craig Corby (34) got off to a flying start, reaching 100 without loss.

The wickets then started to fall slowly, with batting performances from Jaden Fell (18) and a cracking knock from Ben Kennedy-Short (28).

After the break, Grantham’s bowling attack then took to the field, with tight bowling that unfortunately offered little reward in the form of wickets.

Steady batting from the opening pair again saw the first wicket for more than 100 runs, with a few wickets falling slowly and steadily. However, opening Skillington batsman Bruce Felton was not to be budged and saw out the whole 40 overs, with support from his teammates.

As the overs went by, the scores got tighter and tighter, with 28 required off the last four overs. Bowling from Hackney and Corby kept things tight, with only one boundary conceded.

Skillington needed 19 runs from the final three overs for victory, then seven off the final six balls, and finally two from the last ball – but they were only able to register a single and the game was tied.

l The junior season is under way with all five Grantham sides playing in the past week.

The club is providing competitive league cricket for under-10s, under-11s and under-15s, as well as two under-13 sides and a girls’ team competing in the boys league for the first time ever.

This week’s top performers were Harry Robinson (3-10), Siluna Mallawaarachchi (30no) and Sophie Mihill (3-6)

Despite only recording one victory in the four matches played, things are looking promising for the Grantham juniors.


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