Spa men push in-form Grantham all the way

Pradeep Chanditha.
Pradeep Chanditha.
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Woodhall Spa CC’s First XI slipped to their second defeat in three games on Saturday in the Lincs ECB Premier League - when second-placed Grantham claimed the 20 match points by just two wickets.

It was a workmanlike performance from the home side’s bowlers and fielders, and one that almost pulled off what would have been a super victory.

But the visitors passed the winning line of 172 in their second additional over as, once again, the home side’s batsmen failed to bat out the full 50 overs.

Indeed, the Spa batsmen, after being inserted by Grantham skipper Webb, were well placed at 76-0 from 16 overs.

But as has been the story for most of the first half of the season, wickets then began to fall at regular intervals, with batsmen getting themselves in and then out.

Openers Pradeep Chanditha (32) and Prasanna Jayawardene (27) and middle order men Joe Irving (22) and captain Ross Dixon (27) were the only batsmen to make a score of any note, but a final total of 171 was always going to be tough to defend.

However, the Spa men did rally in the field and had one of the leagues strongest batting line-ups in trouble at 10-2 thanks to a quick opening spell form Chanditha.

A mini revival then ensued but spinners Dixon and Paul Timby and seamer Irving then got in on the act and they helped reduce the visitors to 94-5 then 135-7.

However, it wasn’t to be as, despite another wicket from Irving, Grantham’s young all-rounder Keast completed a fine afternoon, hitting the winning runs to finish 46 not out to go along with his 4-25 earlier in the afternoon.

Spa sit fourth after the first half of the season and will be looking to bounce back on Saturday when the entertain Market Deeping in what will start the second half of the season.

On Sunday, both Wanderers sides were in action.

The First XI made the short trip to Revesby to play their second game in the Major Holt Cup.

They came away with a 76-run victory.

Spa batted first and scored a challenging total of 178.

This was thanks in the main to two half centuries from Jack Timby (64) and Tom Dixon (52), who both continued to show the good form they have both been in for most of the season.

In reply, the home side were dismissed for 102 with vaptain Paul Timby the pick of the Spa attack claiming four of the wickets to fall.

Away at Boston, the Second XI, led by Jack Hughes, lost by 52 runs.

Bowling first, Hughes’ young guns did well to bowl out the home side for 129, with Chris Lee and under 14 off-spinner Oliver Hausermann each claiming three wickets.

In reply, Spa found run getting difficult and were eventually skittled out for just 77 with only Henry Wilson showing any sort of form with a score in the 30s.