CRICKET: Sharp batting ends Town’s winning run

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Spalding 3rd (90-9) lost to Burgh & District (93-7) by 3 wickets: Spalding skipper Jimmy Clarke took the positives as his young side suffered a narrow South Lincs and Border League Division Two defeat against Burgh in a low-scoring clash.

Batting first on a tough Memorial Field track that had been battered by rain the day before, Town’s third string managed just 90-9 from their 45 overs with Sam Young (25) and Clarke (23no) top scoring.

A fine spell from Chris Page (4-27) gave Spalding hope of a fourth-successive win, but Burgh opener Phil Sharp (53no) batted through to see his side home with three wickets to spare.

Clarke said: “It was one of those days when things didn’t go to plan – these things happen. I’m sure we shall learn from this and be fully focused for our next match against Boston 3rd.

“We can still take some positives out of the game and will rectify our mistakes for the next match.”

Town lost the toss and Burgh skipper Richard Underwood had no hesitation putting the hosts in after heavy rain the day before.

Young (25) and Will Holmes (8) got off to a steady start, despite steady bowling from brothers Richard and Scott Underwood. Holmes eventually fell when he played on with the score on 21.

Veterans Sharp (4-7) and Terrence Wilkinson (2-8) then really turned the pressure up with Jimmy Stuart (4), Chris Green (0), James Hook (1) and Keith De Keyser (1) falling in quick succession.

Opener Young then followed them back to the hutch to leave Town in deep trouble on 40-6 in the 23rd over.

Page (13) and skipper Clarke carefully added 40 runs in 18 overs as they tried to set a challenging total, before Page was out trying to increase the tempo. Richard Gilbert (0) and Joe Sharpe (2) then fell to see Burgh chasing 91 to win.

The ever-improving Gilbert (1-25) and Page reduced the visitors’ reply to 48-5, with Blackmore (1) and Johnson (0) falling to magnificent catches from Holmes and Young respectively.

But opener Sharp passed 50 as his side stood firm to seal the win, despite Matt Sharpe (2-9) snaring a quick brace to bag an extra bowling point.