Lincs crush Northumberland to seal quarter-final spot

There's a big day of cricket in store at Hove
There's a big day of cricket in store at Hove

Lincolnshire County Cricket Club sealed their place in the quarter-finals of the Unicorns Knockout Trophy and topped their group following victory over Northumberland.

Lincs travelled to Jesmond knowing their place in the last eight was virtually guaranteed, having won all three of their opening group stage matches.

Andy Carter returned to the starting XI after illness, replacing Woodhall Spa’s Jack Timby.

Northumberland won the toss and put the visitors into bat, the fourth consecutive time Lincs had batted first, and again they got off to a fine start.

Jonny Tattersall and Louis Kimber put on 89 for the first wicket before Kimber fell LBW for 29.

Matt Lineker was stumped for 19 and Jonny Tattersall caught behind for a fine 71, leaving the visitors 130-3.

Adam Tillcock went cheaply, but Dan Freeman and Dominic Brown put on 64 for the fifth wicket before Freeman was dismissed for 35.

Dominic Brown and Tom Knight then took the total to 265 before Knight was out for 26 off 17 balls, but Brown remained unbeaten on 71 off 48 balls, including five fours and six sixes, when the 50-over innings closed with Lincolnshire 271-7.

The Northumberland innings started dramatically with Alex Willerton dismissing Jack Jessop for one.

He also removed the other opener Matt Whaley for six and then took the prized wicket of Northumberland captain, Jacques du Toit, for nought.

At 23-3, Northumberland faced an uphill task, and at 31-4 the matched looked beyond them.

Matthew Brown and Alasdair Appleby added 41 for the fifth wicket, but from 72-5 the home side’s batting fell away further as they were bundled out in the 38th over for 114.

Adam Tillcock (4 for 18) was Lincolnshire’s most successful bowler, but Alex Willerton’s 3 for 23 in nine overs had proved decisive in the 157-run victory.

Lincs will meet Devon in the quarter-finals at Grantham on Sunday, June 11.