Rutherford steers Market Rasen First XI to commanding Messingham win

Matt Rutherford took seven Messingham wickets and then hit a half-century in reply EMN-170105-125048002
Matt Rutherford took seven Messingham wickets and then hit a half-century in reply EMN-170105-125048002

Market Rasen First XI left themselves handily-placed on the shoulders of the Lincolnshire County League leaders after completing back-to-back wins on Saturday.

The Firsts followed up their edgy opening day victory against Alkborough with a convincing seven-wicket win at Messingham.

They sit third in the Premier Division, within a few points of local rivals Caistor and early season pacesetters Bracebridge Heath and with a game in hand.

Having won the toss and elected to bat first, the home side got off to a good start.

However Ryan Penniston followed his five-wicket haul in that opening win by taking two early scalps to restrict the home side to 26-2 from 10 overs.

Both Penniston and Will Bradford bowled brilliantly as Messingham were restricted to 40-2 at drinks.

After the break, Matt Rutherford was introduced into the attack, and his spin was too much for the home side as he took 7 for 32 from 14.2 overs to dismiss Messingham for just 109.

A special mention must go to Penniston who ran in tirelessly for 16 overs straight to take 2 for 32.

Rasen made a slow start to their reply after losing an early wicket.

But with Dave Papworth (27) and Matt Rutherford (55 not out) sharing a stand of 64, they were able to move Rasen close to the target.

Chris Higgins came to the crease to complete the victory as Rasen knocked off the low target for the loss of only three wickets inside 33 overs.

Messingham: 109.

Bowling: W. Bradford 8-2-18-0; R. Penniston 16-5-32-2; M. Rutherford 14.2-5-32-7; T. Boryszczuk 5-1-22-1.

Rasen: D. Papworth 27, W. Bradford 5, M. Rutherford 55*, J. Darrell 0, C. Higgins 15*, Extras 6. Total: 110-3.

* Caistor’s 100 per cent start to the season was ended by a seven-wicket defeat at Scunthorpe Town on Saturday.

Having won the toss and batted first, almost all of Caistor’s top and middle order made starts, but none were able to go on and make a telling score, Rory Ronadlson top-scoring with 34.

All but three of the Caistor batsmen reached double figures, but the visitors were eventually dismissed for 197 with five balls short of their 50-over allocation.

Daniel Cliffe was the pick of the home attack with 5 for 69.

The visitors struggled to make a breakthrough as they defended a decent total with Scunthorpe openers David Brown (54) and Ramesh Chand putting on 139 for the first wicket.

When Brown became Kieran Brooker’s first of two victims, Chand (91) took the hosts to the brink of victory before Ben Brumby (27) completed the job.