After what seems like a lifetime, we were finally greeted by a sunny weekend. Although the sun shone, it was very much a weekend for the bowlers in all the games.
Tom Shorthouse’s men welcomed Market Deeping to London Road. On winning the toss, Sleaford elected to bowl hoping to extract some movement from the pitch early on. Tite and Burrows opened the bowling and make early inroads as Burrows removed Gillett (3) and Sargeant (0). Opener Josh Smith hung around but finally succumbed to pressure edging behind to Wing from the excellent Cameron Hall (3-19). Hall then removed the dangerous Manzoor for 1 caught at slip by Hibberd. Amir soon followed caught in the gully to leave Deeping in trouble at 59-5. James Hook (60) played some aggressive shots and along with a few cameos helped Deeping reach 120 all out after 43 overs. Wickets were shared with Hall the pick of the bowlers but also contributions from Tite (2-33), Burrows (2-5) and Joe Peck (2-16).
In reply, Deeping struck early removed skipper Shorthouse for 5 caught at slip. The Deeping bowlers smelt blood on a pitch that was still offering seam movement. What followed was a big procession of wickets as Ali Sharpe and Shahzad Amir tore through the Sleaford batting line up to bowl out the home team for 47. Credit to the Deeping bowlers who bowled superbly but it was a bad day at the office for the Sleaford batters.
Fortunes were much different for Dan Hutson’s men who travelled to Moulton Harrox. Moulton won the toss and asked Sleaford to bat first. Sleaford were reduced to 36-3 despite a flurry of boundaries from Simon Godby. Skipper Hutson (27) and Jake Henderson (29) rebuilt with a partnership of 70 and 18 quick runs from Rhys Collings helped Sleaford to 144-6. Ben Glendinning batted nicely for 33 not out to steer the visitors to 188 all out.
In reply, Simon Godby took 3 early wickets taking out the top order but it was Rhys Collings who removed the dangerman, Josh Newton for 9. Ben Hutson then got amongst the lower order to take 5 wickets for 15 runs. Moulton’s innings never got going and they were dismissed for 84. Ben Hutson the pick of the bowlers but was ably supported by Simon Godby (3-18) and a wicket apiece for Giles Goddard and Rhys Collings.
On Sunday, the 1st XI defeated Bracebridge Heath by 7 wickets. On losing the toss, Sleaford were asked to bowl. Drew Harbron and Tom Willoughby got to work to make inroads into the Bracebridge top order. Some resistance from Fraser-Cattnach (21) and Sri Lankan overseas Jayasinghe (39) gave Bracebridge hope of posting a competitive score but Willoughby was able to break the partnership. Hibberd came onto mop up the tail and returned figures of 5-10 to help bowl the visitors out for 75.
In reply, Sleaford lost Mansfield (15), Godby (10) and Hix (0) but Patel and Willoughby were able to bring home the win and an early finish.
Caythorpe ran out winners against the 2nds at Caythorpe. Ian Shorthouse won the toss and chose to bat. The only note worthy contribution came from Phil Sneath who hit 21 out of a low total of 108 all out. In reply, Caythorpe made light work of knocking the runs off with the loss of 2 wickets, despite a debut wicket for Oliver Sneath.
The Women’s Softball cricketers travelled to Blyth to take on Retford and Blyth. In the first game, Retford ran out winners winning by 51 runs. Batting first Retford posted a net score of 332 despite 2 wickets from Stef Ellis. In reply Sleaford posted 281 net score with contributions from Stef Ellis (17).
Fortunes changed for the second game with a close fought win against Blyth. Batting first Sleaford posted a net score 323. There were good contributions from Wendy Henry (20), Yvonne Townend (15) and Shannon Henry (16). In reply Blyth fell 7 runs short with some good bowling from Evie Jarvis who only conceded 17 runs from her 4 overs.