Woodhall Spa Firsts returned to winning ways on Saturday with an 83-run victory away at Market Deeping in the Lincolnshire ECB Premier League, moving up to fourth in the table.
On an overcast and humid day, and with a green looking pitch, home captain Dave Sargeant elected to bowl first on winning the toss which meant the Spa’s teenage opening partnership of Henry Wilson and Ollie Caswell would be really tested, especially with the experienced left-arm seamer Lee Peacock opening the bowling.
The pair once again stood up to the task well and had put on 30 for the first wicket before Wilson lost his wicket via a sharp slip catch for a well-made 10.
A 75-run partnership then ensured between Caswell and Harsha Vithana who again looked in imperious form during his innings of 39 before he was unluckily given out caught at slip off the bowling of his countryman Perera, who also accounted for Prasanna Jayawardene soon after.
However, Caswell stood firm and combined a solid defence with a willingness to attack anything loose and he passed his maiden half-century at this level before finally succumbing LBW for a fine 65.
For someone so young it was a super innings.
He had set the innings up well on a difficult wicket allowing the power house middle order of Joe Irving (16), captain Jack Luffman (13), Brandan Laurenzi (19 not out) and Ross Dixon (19) to score some quick runs to take the score to an excellent 221-7, just four runs short of maximum batting points.
In reply, the home side’s innings never really got going and they were soon in trouble at 45-5 thanks to excellent opening spells from Irving (3-34) and in particular Alex King (3-23), who extracted seam movement to bowl all of his trio of victims.
Barnes (33) showed some resistance, although Spa would be disappointed to give him extra lives with three chances put down, and some late order hitting did push the home side beyond the 100 mark.
However, it was left to Jack Cooke (1-24), Dixon (2-43) and Vithana (1-7) to finish the innings off and return home with 19 well-earned points.
Spa entertain third placed Grantham on Saturday, beginning at noon.
At home Matthew Sargeant’s Second XI climbed to sixth in the table with an excellent five-wicket victory over title favourites Spalding in the South Lincs and Border Premier Division.
On a good looking Jubilee Park pitch the visitors won the toss and elected to bat first and would’ve been very disappointed when the final wicket fell for just 126.
Contrary to this, Spa were delighted at how well they had bowled and fielded right from the word go when they reduced the visitors to 27-4 thanks to the opening combination of James White (2-26) and Connor Parsons (3-37).
Some resistance was shown my Miles (53) but the lower order were blown away by the wily and consistent Peter Jackson who took three wickets, including that of Miles, for just 10 runs form his nine over spell.
Despite the early loss of Cherry (8) and then slipping to 76-5 the 2ndXI claimed maximum points with more than 15 overs to spare and just before the arrival of the violent evening storm that hit the village.
This was thanks to a solid 37 from skipper Sargeant and then some belligerent hitting from middle order mean Danny Wells (25 not out from 27 balls) and Parsons (24 not out form 18).
The Wanderers Second XI game at Heighington on Sunday was cancelled due to an unfit ground.