CRICKET: Harrox boost survival hopes

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Moulton Harrox (90-7) beat Welby (89) by three wickets: Harrox did their South Lincs and Border League Premier Division survival hopes the power of good with victory over Welby in the big basement battle on Saturday.

Visitors Welby won the toss and elected to bat on a very typical Moulton track.

Talented youngster Henry Lavery(2-20) started as brightly as ever, getting Welby opener James Tickler (0) to chip the ball up to Harry Barnett in third ball of the over.

Next in was Michael Whaton (7), who looked in good form until he was undone by yet another excellent delivery from Moulton’s young prodigy.

Lavery was supported well by skipper for the day Matthew Barnett (0-17), but Welby began to rebuild their innings, forcing Harrox to bring on the spinners.

Maxwell Cusack (3-26)immediately beat the well-set opener Fraser Sloss (26) with a clever piece of bowling and Jonny Barnett took a smart catch to complete the dismissal.

This triggered a collapse in the Welby batting order, with only Brian Spence showing any sign of resistance with a bright and breezy 21 before falling to veteran Jonny Barnett, who took superb figures of 5-21.

Cusack also chipped in with two more wickets to bowl Welby out for just 81.

Harrox got their reply off to the worst possible start, losing their top four of Jack Cusack (2), Jack Barnett (5), Harry Barnett (4) and Will Trimm (0) for just 11 runs – due largely to decent bowling and poor judgement.

Captain Matt Barnett looked in superb form, quickly dispatching two boundaries before he was trapped LBW by a piece of excellent old fashioned swing bowling for 12.

Jake Morton also looked good for a quick-fire 13 before he was dismissed, while Karl Hibbert quickly followed after a destructive nine.

This brought spinners Jonny Barnett (19no) and Maxwell Cusack (9no) to the crease with the score on 50-7.

They battled doggedly in a 40-run partnership to ensure that Harrox would get over the line in the 32nd over.

The victory will go a long way to ensure that Harrox will remain in the top tier next season, as they have opened up a 16-point gap over Welby

Moulton are away to Sleaford 2nd this weekend (1.30pm), with key man Jonny Barnett unavailable.