Woodhall Spa Cricket Club’s Lincs ECB Premier League campaign got off to a flying start on Saturday with a 157-run victory away at Market Deeping.
It was a fine all-round performance from the team as they posted a mammoth 275 after stand-in skipper Ross Dixon, deputising for the Jack Luffman, who continues to recover form an appendectomy, won the toss and elected to bat first.
His decision was vindicated as openers Jack Timby and Pradeep Chanditha showed positive intent and powered to an opening partnership of 114.
Chanditha was particularly aggressive bringing up his maiden half-century for the club before being dismissed for an entertaining 64 from just 52 deliveries.
Timby was joined by Prassana Jaaywardena (14) who looked in prime tough before dragging one onto his stumps and then Timby followed for a fine 53.
At 136-3, Spa’s innings was at a critical stage but a 120-run partnership between 16-year- old Henry Wilson (44) and all-rounder Joe Irving (72) then ensued.
The pair first consolidated and then began to dominate the home bowlers and fielders with some positive running between the wickets and stroke play, particularly from the blade of the impressive Irving.
The return of opening bowler Parvathaneni stemmed Spa’s charge for 300 but the men from Jubilee Park were delighted to set such an imposing total.
Spa’s momentum continued in the field and opening bowlers Alex King and Chanditha set the tone with some tight and unlucky bowling early and the latter was rewarded with the home side on 44 when he had opener Smith well caught by Tom Cushen after deceiving the batsman with a slower ball.
From that point onwards, Spa turned the screw and, led by skipper Dixon, who introduced himself into the attack and ripped out the middle order with some fine leg-spin bowling.
He was well supported with catches from Cushen and Chris Anderson, and when Irving took the final catch to claim a 20-point victory it also completed a well-deserved five wicket haul for Dixon, who finished with 5-16 from his nine overs.
In between, King returned to pick up a deserved wicket with Chanditha (2-30) and Irving (2-28) claimed a brace apiece.
In the corresponding Second XI fixture at Jubilee Park, Matthew Sargeant led from the front in his side’s seven-wicket victory.
Sargeant fell just two runs short of what would’ve been a fine century.
Earlier in the 218-run run chase, he had shared in a second wicket partnership of 173 with Tom Dixon, who was also in good form smashing an excellent 78.
With both the senior men back in the pavilion it was left to under-14 player Ollie Caswell (six not out) and 18-year-old Nathan Carter (16 not out) to see the Spa side home to victory.
This was all after the visitors had themselves put up a fine batting display, losing just three wickets in scoring 217, based around an innings of 111 from Connor Gillet.
The Spa bowling attach of Sam Cherry, Pete Jackson, James White and Matthew Haslam, along with the fielders kept to their task, manfully and bowled well on what was a free-scoring and perfect day for batting.
White finished with 2-64 from 12 overs with Haslam claiming 1-42 form his 10.
On Sunday Chris Anderson’s Wanderers started their Lincoln and District Premier Division campaign with a 76-run defeat at home to Lindum.
Lindum posted 236 from their 40 overs.
Coach Paul Timby made his first appearance of the season and took 3-62 from his 10 overs while Alfie Lindsey, Alex King and John Temperton all took two wickets each.
Spa scored 160, despite a good effort from Jack Timby (59), Tom Caswell (17), Sam Cooke, (12), Paul Timby (13) and James White (20).
This week sees the under-15 side start their fixtures away at Grantham, with the senior sides all in action over the Bank Holiday weekend.
Saturday sees the First XI entertain Spalding while the Seconds travel to Stamford.
On Sunday the Wanderers Firsts make the short trip to Revesby. Bank Holiday Monday sees the start of T20 action for the Firsts with the group stage of the Winkworth Cup, where they take on Boston and Lindum at Lindum.