CRICKET: Virtuoso showing from Jimmy key in Town win

Close call: Bourne 2nd's Xanti Xipu has Spalding's Mike Kearns Snr in trouble on Saturday. Photo: SG200811-14MD (MIKE DAVISON)
Close call: Bourne 2nd's Xanti Xipu has Spalding's Mike Kearns Snr in trouble on Saturday. Photo: SG200811-14MD (MIKE DAVISON)

Spalding 3rd (207-9) beat Burgh and District (160) by 47 runs: JIMMY Clarke stole the show as Spalding pulled off an impressive victory to keep the pressure on rivals and South Lincs and Border League Division Three leaders Moulton Harrox 2nd.

Veteran Clarke slapped a brutal 58 not out and took 6-35 with the ball as Town took the full 20 points against Burgh and District on Saturday.

Spalding were put into bat on a difficult wicket and Burgh opening bowler Scott Sutton (4-42) helped reduce them to an all-too-familiar looking score of 52-5.

However, Kev Nottingham was still at the crease and added to his fifty in the previous match with a fine display of concentration, scoring 65 and putting on good partnerships with Jack Barratt (26).

Once Barratt departed Clarke accelerated towards the end of the Town innings with five fours, helping his side to an imposing total of 207-9.

Spalding struck two early blows with the ball through Barratt (1-33) and Ash Bright (1-29), but Phil Sharp (64) and Pete Blackmore (51) both played classy innings to keep Burgh in the hunt – leaving both results still possible until very late on.

Tight bowling from the Spalding spinners Clarke and Richard Gilbert kept the run rate down in the tense middle overs, resulting in a dramatic collapse to 160 all out as scoreboard pressure proved decisive.

The win leaves Town 16 points behind Harrox, with neither side in action this weekend.

They also don’t have a fixture left against each other, meaning Moulton could take a huge step towards the title if they can beat local rivals Pinchbeck on September 4. Town have two games left, with Timberlands up next.