Caistor CC pip Cherry Willingham to bolster title defence

Caistor CC First XI. Picture: Wes Allison EMN-190807-172402002
Caistor CC First XI. Picture: Wes Allison EMN-190807-172402002

A match-winning knock of 82 from Gareth Johnson enhanced their chances of defending their Lincolnshire County League crown.

Caistor’s successful chase gave them a two-wicket win at second-placed Cherry Willingham and moved them within a point and a place of Saturday’s opponents.

Cherry batted first and added runs steadily, putting on 47 for the first wicket before Kieran Brooker had Lee Coupland caught by Mick Francis for 17.

They had reached 105 before Rory Ronaldson caught Matt O’Halloran, off Paul Jackson for 54,

The hosts continued to amass runs and lose wickets until their final batsman fell at 205 in the 49th over.

Luke Francis finished with 5 for 25, while Tom Broughton held three catches.

When Caistor batted their innings mirrored Cherry’s.

They made 61 for the first wicket before Mick Francis was caught by Lee Coupland, off Ben Roebuck, for 15.

Caistor moved on to 114 when Pete Briggs was caught by Craig Cosgrove, again off Roebuck, for 26.

Johnson finally succumbed to Roebuck for 82, but his team-mates plugged away at the Cherry total, finally overcoming it in the 48th over with two wickets to spare.

Jim Parker remained unbeaten on 29, while Roebuck finished with 4 for 74.

On Saturday, Caistor host second-bottom Grimsby Town at Brigg Road (1pm start).

Cherry: 205.

Bowling: S. Woolley 10-1-51-0; R. Ronaldson 5-0-24-2; P. Jackson 16-1-45-2; K. Brooker 11-2-39-1; L. Francis 7.3-0-25-5.

Caistor: M. Francis 15, G. Johnson 82, P. Briggs 26, R. Ronaldson 0, D. Bevis 19, J. Parker 29*, K. Brooker 1, L. Francis 6, T. Broughton 0, P. Jackson 3*, Extras 25. Total: 206-8.

* Market Rasen First XI are four points above the Premier Division relegation places after falling to a 17-run defeat at home to Lindum Second XI on Saturday.

Will Bradford and skipper George Fussey took two cheap wickets early on as Lindum batted first, but after that wickets became harder to come by.

Half-centuries from opener Jack Mclagan (69) and Osama Rabbani (56) allowed the visitors to post a creditable 210-6 from their 50 overs, with Matt Rutherford again the chief wicket-taker with 2 for 56.

In reply, opener Bradford fell cheaply, but Rasen rebuilt through Fussey (51) and Lee Chambers (22) before both were removed by Ted Horner-Timmins (4 for 48).

He and James Dewhurst (3 for 50) continued to take regular wickets as Rasen looked set to fall well short.

Lower order resistance put the home side back in contention, with Daniel Clark hitting 39, supported by James Fussey (10) and Joe Akin (15 not out).

But Rasen were eventually dismissed for 193 with two overs of their allocation still in hand.

They sit 10th and on Saturday head to Nettleham who are two places higher and 10 points better off.

Lindum: 210-6.

Bowling: James Fussey 10-0-39-1; W. Bradford 6-1-24-1; P. Eames 5-1-20-0; D. Clark 8-1-25-1; M. Rutherford 14-0-56-2; J. Atkin 7-0-36-1.

Rasen: G. Fussey 51, W. Bradford 1, L. Chambers 22, N. Davies 5, I. Williams 11, M. Rutherford 17, D. Christie 4, D. Clark 39, J. Fussey 10, J. Atkin 15*, P. Eames 5, Extras 13. Total: 193.

* In Division Two, Caistor Seconds entertained Cherry Willingham Second XI at Brigg Road.

Cherry batted first, with Caleb Pipes-Goulsbra (62) the pick of the batsmen.

The previous week’s hero for Caistor, Matty Blackburn, this week took 3 for 45, backed up by four wickets from Ollie Barrick as they bowled Cherry out for 163. However, Caistor again did not perform so well with the bat.

Three wickets each for Phil Nicholson and Pipes-Goulsbra, and with Tom Hunt unable to bat because of his age, Caistor were all out for 81.

Although firmly embedded at the foot of the table, and without a win, Caistor are now regularly picking up bowling bonus points and that elusive win looks within reach.