Deeping ace Andrews takes seven wickets

Cricket News from the Lincs Free Press and Spalding Guardian,, @FreePressSport on Twitter
Cricket News from the Lincs Free Press and Spalding Guardian,, @FreePressSport on Twitter

Tom Andrews took seven wickets as Market Deeping beat Grimsby Town by 181 runs in the Lincs Premier on Saturday.

Andrews recorded superb figures of 7-45 as Deeping skittled Grimsby out for just 98 runs, and with the hosts batsmen continuing the excellent start to the season victory was never in doubt.

Chris Jones, who hit a half-century in the season opener at Spalding, went close to a century but fell just two runs short while fellow opener Jamie Morgan scored 42 as the hosts got off to a fine start.

Alex Wheatley produced his second half-century in three innings this season with an excellent knock off 66 as Deeping reached 279-7 and Andrews then got stuck into the visitors batting order.

n Mahesh Rajaratne was the star of the show as Spalding managed a winning draw over Billingborough.

The Sri Lankan is proving to be an astute signing for Town with both bat and ball as he followed up his maiden half-century for the club with a fluent 82.

Rajaratne hit ten fours and four sixes during his impressive knock and and also shone with the ball with impressive figures of 5-49.

Spalding captain Rob Ambrose lost the toss for a third consecutive week and his side was asked to bat first on a typical early season pitch.

In-form South African Warren Nel and Rajaratne continued their blossoming opening partnership with a stand of 72 before Nel (22) was bowled by an impressive delivery from Jonathan Miles.

It was the first time Nel has been dismissed this season but Rajaratne continued to impress with flambuoyant stroke making to take the score to 120 before Josh Newton (4) was caught behind from a short ball from the persistent Miles.

That wicket sparked a mini-collapse that saw the experienced Roy Tilley, a member of the Billingborough team when they played their first ever game in a league in 1986 cause problems for the visitors.

Tilley, who finished with impressive figures of 5-63, claimed the wickets of Rajaratne (82), Wamanga Perera (4) and Chris Dring (1) in quick succession to take the score to 133-5, proving that taking pace off the ball was the tactic to deploy on this tricky surface.

Tim Norris (13) and Charlie Kearns (31) steadied the Town ship until Tilley once again broke the partnership with a smart catch off his own bowling.

He went on to complete his five wicket haul by removing Ambrose (4) leg before wicket but a cameo role from Nuwan Jayasena (26) allowed Town to pass 200 and post a competitive total, knowing that the bowling attack would be a stern test for newly promoted Billingborough.

Having been dismissed for 212, Town went in search of early wickets but a 50-run partnership between Andy Scott (30) and Nathan Mill (25) frustrated the opening pairing of Kearns and Perera.

The introduction of spin by skipper Ambrose shifted the momentum Town’s way, as Rajaratne and Jayasena slowed the run rate with some controlled and intelligent bowling.

Rajaratne soon removedScott to spark an incredible spell which saw him take the next four wickets, including two in consecutive deliveries, aided by a spectacular slip catch by Perera.

Jayasena claimed his first wicket for Town with the prized scalp of Miles (9).

Spalding were sensing victory but a valiant partnership between Steve Scott (57) not out and Richard Wells (23) further frustrated Town’s bowlers.

It wasn’t until the last over that the match reignited as Kearns removed Richard Wells and Angus Youles (0) in successive deliveries, taking the score to 178-9.

This left Kearns with one delivery at number 11 Tilley for Town to take 19 points, but he survived.

The result leaves Spalding in second behind Bracebridge Heath, the only team to have won all three matches, with Deeping in third.

n Bourne are unbeaten after a winning draw against reigning champions Sleaford, for whom New Zealand ace Tim McIntosh once again showed his class with an unbeaten 92 to deny Bourne victory.

Sleaford elected to bowl and imprressive Bourne wicket-keeper Carl Wilson smashed an unbeaten75, including ten fours and two sixes - with good support from Robert Bellamy (44) and Ben Stroud (36) as Bourne reached 231-8.

Last year’s champions reached 201-9 but McIntosh, who had also taken three wickets, proved what a class act he is at this level by keeping his wicket intact to avoid defeat.