Caistor CC seal top-three finish, safety for Market Rasen CC

Caistor CC ended a weather-affected title defence on a high note, while Market Rasen CC ensured another season of top-flight cricket despite a final day defeat.

Caistor CC First XI's defence of their title was hit by five abandoned matches. Picture: Wes Allison EMN-190916-120338002
Caistor CC First XI's defence of their title was hit by five abandoned matches. Picture: Wes Allison EMN-190916-120338002

It has been a difficult season for many sides in the Lincolnshire County League, with many matches abandoned because of rain, and some clubs having difficulty raising teams.

Ironically the final Saturday of the season saw cricket played in autumn sunshine as Caistor entertained Lindum at Brigg Road and Rasen First XI headed to Cleethorpes.

Lindum batted first and were losing wickets steadily, before 30 from Harry Wells, batting at nine, and 45 from Ted Horner–Timmins, at 10, helped the visitors to 164 all out.

Kieran Brooker capped another impressive season with a haul of four wickets for 56.

In reply, Caistor slipped to 60-4 when Pete Briggs (32) and Jim Parker, who finished with 65 not out, helped to pull things around.

An unbeaten 26 from Brooker then saw Caistor home by five wickets, with Parker taking home the man-of-the-match award.

The victory meant Caistor finished the season in third place in the Premier Division, 11 points behind runners-up Cherry Willingham, and 21 adrift of new champions Scothern.

* Rasen lost the toss against Cleethorpes Second XI and fielded first.

Will Bradford (2 for 31) quickly removed home skipper John Mansfield, but top-scorer Eddie Carlton (36) and Ben Rogers (23) put on 54 for the second wicket, the first of a series of productive partnerships.

There were contributions all down the order, but Sancho Jackson (3 for 47) and Daniel Clark (4 for 49) did not let Cleethorpes get away and they were bowled out for 183 in the 49th over.

Home bowler Matthew Owens (5 for 53) soon had Rasen in trouble in reply, reducing the visitors to 51-5 despite 34 from Liam Scales.

Ian Williams attempted to anchor the innings, but aside from David Papworth’s 14, no other batsmen reached double figures.

And soon after Williams was ninth man out for 33, Rasen were bowled out for 108 in the 33rd over.

The 75-run defeat dropped Rasen to eighth, and crucially seven points above second-bottom Hartsholme.

* Market Rasen Second XI finished a strong campaign just outside the promotion places in Division Two.

A dominant 126-run win at home to Cherry Willingham Seconds on Saturday left Rasen in third place, albeit 64 points adrift of the runaway top two.

Winning the toss and batting first, Rasen were in early trouble at 16-3.

But Dan Quinlan (34) and Sam Williams (22) led the recovery with a third-wicket stand of 72.

Another mini-collapse left the hosts on 114-6, but an unbeaten 61 from Dale Chambers, supported in an unbroken stand of 67 with Gary Bierlein (36 not out) lifted Rasen’s total to 210-7 from their 45 overs.

Cherry’s reply started well as Danny Langford (29) and John Wilkinson (23) guided the visitors to 67-1.

But Bierlein (4 for 4) then took charge, bowling Langford for the first of his four wickets and taking two catches off James Quinlan (2 for 14) as nine-man Cherry collapsed to 84 all out.

* Elsewhere in Division Two, a young Caistor Second XI travelled to Blossom Way to play a strong Cleethorpes third team

Led by 71 from Paul Ridley and fifties from Ian Marland and Simon Taylor, Cleethorpes amassed 325-6.

In reply an unbeaten 74 from Olly Barrick and 14 from Dominic Wooley were the main contributors to Caistor’s 119 all out.

Despite some heavy losses, a young Caistor second team has competed well in some matches, and relegation into a more suitable division will hopefully give them more encouragement in 2020.