That winning feeling! Horncastle CC end their wait for victory - after almost a year

Tense draw followed by win...

Fraser Pemberton.

Horncastle CC are enjoying that winning feling again - after waiting almost a year to taste victory.

You have to go back to September 6, 2020 for the last time that either of the club's senior teams won a match.

But 48 weeks, 336 days and 25 matches later it has finally happened.

The weekend started with the Saturday team hosting Haxey Seconds in the Lincolnshire County League Third Division - in what turned out to be the most thrilling game of the season.

The bowling and fielding unit were outstanding and bowled Haxey out for just 95.

The wickets were shared around between Dave Grest (three), Steve West (two), Kai Stephenson (two), Adam Waters (two) and Tom Hackett.

A special mention must go to young Reece Pemberton, who took a quite stunning catch to remove Haxey's best batsman.

Horncastle's reply started by reaching 26 for 1 with Grest and Chris Bargh going well.

Some good bowling brought about a flurry of wickets, leaving Horncastle reeling on 64 for 8 and still 32 short of victory.

Kai Stephenson joined Rowan Hackett at the crease and set about the chase.

They battled and whittled down the runs required moving the score to 92 for 8.

Hackett was then bowled with just four to win.

Three more runs were added, leaving Horncastle needing one to win and Haxey needing a wicket.

The ball snuck through the defences and into the stumps and the game was tied.

The outstanding performance and effort of the Saturday team gave the Sunday boys all the grit and determination they needed to finally get that long-awaited win.

Heighington were the visitors to Coronation Walk and they were quite simply never in the game.

Two early wickets for Dan Freeman set them back, and when Will Broughton added another they were in trouble at just 18 for 3.

Wickets kept falling at regular intervals with Rowan Hackett taking two, Tom Hackett one and a brilliant spell of spin bowling saw Nathan Whiting clean up with four wickets for the loss of just 11 runs.

Heighington had been bowled out for 105.

Openers Rob Bee and Fraser Pemberton set about the reply and got off to a solid start before Pemberton was well caught behind.

Bee was then caught for 15 leaving Horncastle on 23 for 2.

Three more wickets were lost with the score moving to 54 with Nathan Whiting joining Dan Freeman out in the middle.

This pair wrestled back control and knocked off the remaining runs with ease bring scenes of utter jubilation and relief to the home players and supporters.

Both Freeman (40 not out) and Whiting (23 not out) played shots all round the wicket to bring up their 50 partnership and bring home the victory.