July showers ended the chance of any play for either Market Rasen Saturday sides this weekend.
A downpour on Saturday morning ensured that Rase Park was unfit for play and an hour later Nettleham CC contacted the 2nd XI to confirm the same shower had rendered their ground unplayable also.
This left the only play of the weekend to the Sunday 2nd XI and a George Marshall quarter final for the Saturday 2nd XI. Both important games as the 2nd XI travelled away to title challengers Washingborough and the Saturday 2nd XI made the tough journey away to Scunthorpe 1st XI.
Only 24 hours on from the rain of Saturday morning Rasen travelled to Scunthopre looking forward to a challenging cup encounter. Playing a side three leagues above them, Rasen knew that this would be a stern test of their progress made this season.
Currently fourth in the Lincs Premier Division, Scunthorpe won the toss and elected to put Rasen into bat, with conditions turning overcast opportunities for the bowlers looked to be plentiful.
The father and son partnership of Liam and Charlie Scales opened the batting for Rasen and got them off to a solid start. Excellent defensive play from Charlie was complimented by attacking shot play from Liam.
Whilst attempting to fend off the opening attack from Scunthorpe, Liam was caught at mid-on on 36, Charlie (6) followed soon after as he edged a quicker ball to follow his dad back into the pavilion.
This brought together Kev Salmon and Nic Keast, both have performed well this season with the bat. In concentrated fashion they set about manoeuvring the ball around the field, picking up singles and rotating the strike where possible. Keast soon showed Scunthrope he should not be treated lightly playing some extravagant shots against a very experienced bowling line-up.
Salmon was eventually dismissed trying to score through the leg-side from a brilliant one handed catch.
This brought Rasen’s captain to the crease, with his 30th birthday looming Stephenson rolled back the years as Keast led the charge as he pushed the score on taking quick singles where possible. This would be Rasen’s most fruitful partnership building 60 vital runs.
Finishing on 130-6 from their allotted overs put Rasen into a competitive position in the knowledge that Scunthorpe possessed a very string batting line-up. Continuing his impressive season Nic Keast finished on 57 not out.
In response, Scunthorpe got off to a very solid start, scoring runs freely around the ground. Looking for the important breakthrough Stephenson changed the bowling frequently attempting to not let the Scunthorpe batsmen settle.
Facing tough opposition Rasen kept the pressure on and found the breakthrough as Sam Williams was rewarded for a good spell of bowling as he picked up the prized wicket of Ram Chand on 42.
Rasen always struggled after the impressive start from Scunthorpe, who finished the game inside 24 overs for the loss of only one wicket. The young Rasen side’s first experience of Premier Division cricket will bode well for them for the remainder of the season.
Rasen 2nd’s welcome Scunthrope 3rd XI to Rase Park this coming weekend.
Market Rasen’s Sunday 2nd XI were hoping for a better outcome as they faced Washingbourgh in the league at Rase Park. With an outfield still suffering the effects from the previous days downpour the scoring was expectably slow for both sides.
With a team filled with youth players Rasen struggled to build a meaningful partnership. Losing wickets at regular intervals eventually saw Rasen put together 69 hard fought runs before losing their 10th wicket.
In reply Washingborough scored quickly, with James Fussey providing resistance for Rasen with an impressive two wickets from two wicket maidens. This was the only highlight for Rasen in the field as Washingbourgh chased the total for the loss of only two wickets.
This weekend will see the 1st XI travel away to local rivals Louth CC in game which Rasen must take points from. The 2nd XI welcome Scunthorpe to Rase Park looking to continue their excellent league form this season.