MARKET Rasen Town Cricket Club took advantage of a second consecutive dry weekend to bag three wins from three games.
The 2nd XI coasted to another nine-wicket victory, the Sunday 1st XI defeated Nettleham by 81 runs and the Sunday 2nd XI gambolled to a six wicket win over Hykeham 2nds.
Ryan Penniston was the man responsible for the 2nds’ comprehensive win on Saturday, as the paceman dismembered a Morton batting line–up that had threatened to make a game of it at Rase Park. Instead, the visitors from Gainsborough were treated to a bowling exhibition, that saw Penniston claim the excellent figures of 7 for 34 from 15 overs.
Gordon Moden, 20, and Ben Bethell, 22, both threatened to make the afternoon more of a trial for Mark Robinson’s men, but neither batsman went on and the rest of the Morton side were powerless to prevent Penniston and his accomplices in the Rasen attack from bundling them out for 80.
James Cooper and Bethell asked plenty of searching questions with the ball as Rasen started their reply, but Andy Richley, 38 not out, and Darren Salmon, 31 not out, saw the home side to a comfortable nine-wicket win in the 25th over.
Matt Rutherford’s 73 not out helped the Sunday 1st XI post a challenging total of 195 for 7 from their 40 overs against Nettleham.
After an encouraging start with the bat from Ian Williams and Graeme Bell, Rasen’s middle order fell away to leave Rutherford plenty to do from the number seven slot in the batting order.
However, the home side’s skipper was more than up to the task and notched his first 50 of the year to see his side to a total that was always likely to prove difficult to chase down.
Nettleham’s reply never really got out of the blocks with Will Bradford and Ryan Penniston both bowling well with the new cherry and giving little away.
Jon Darke then did the majority of the damage to ensure that Nettleham’s thoughts of victory remained a mere glimmer in the eye, as the visitors closed on 114 for 9.
Major Hoult Cup action was the name of the game for the Sunday 2nd XI and the youngsters notched their first win of the season at the first time of asking in 2012, romping to a six wicket win over Hykeham 2nds.
The city folk batted first and were grateful to their experienced opener Mark Conyers, who grafted through 30 overs for 49, and Paul Buffham, 24.
Their steady batting allowed them to see out the 40 overs on 136 for 5. Sam Williams, 1 for 26 from ten overs, was the pick of the Rasen attack and on another day could have had three or four wickets to his name. He received excellent support from Liam Entwhistle, 2 for 24 from 9 overs, who came back well after a difficult opening spell and Simon Bunn, 1 for 26.
Rasen’s reply rollicked along at a decent rate to see them over the line in the 27th over for the loss of only four wickets, thanks to a stoic knock from Ollie Bratton-Thornton and a first half-century of the season for Andy Richley, 77.
There’s cup action galore at Rase Park this weekend, with the 1st XI hosting Hibaldstow in the George Marshall Trophy and the 2nd XI playing Cherry Willingham 2nds in the Bob Welton Cup on Saturday, both 1.30pm starts.
Sunday sees the 1st XI at Cherry Willingham and the 2nd XI host Aisthorpe, in their final Major Hoult Cup group game, both 2pm starts.