CRICKET: Sleaford sit third at midway stage

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At the half way point in the ECB Premier League season, Sleaford’s first XI, sponsored by Wright Vigar, sit in third position following their match against Grantham in which they gained the better of the drawn encounter on Saturday.

Batting first after winning the toss, Sleaford were given a flying start by their acting captain Thomas Shorthouse who reached his half century in only the seventh over, as he peppered the boundary with a series of attractive shots.

His innings came to a somewhat tame end when he offered a return catch to Bansal, but the impetus that he gave the innings enabled his side to build a substantial total, although the visitors competed tenaciously throughout.

Tim McIntosh and Louis Kimber compiled a century partnership as Sleaford’s dominance continued and the latter was only three runs short of his half century when he was dismissed with the score on 207. McIntosh went on to dominate the remainder of the proceedings as he moved to another century and by the time the innings closed with the score on 333, he had moved on to an undefeated 161.

The Grantham response proved to be an extremely solid affair and, in truth, Sleaford never really threatened to dismiss their visitors and therefore claim maximum points. Contributions of 83 from both Bansal and Nurse enabled their team to close on 267 for the loss of seven wickets and claim a deserved draw.

At Spalding on the same day, Sleaford won by 130 runs after posing a total of 268 thanks to contributions of 75 from Phil Sneath and 69 from Sumit Puri. Spalding never threatened their visitors total and were dismissed for 138.

On Sunday, Sleaford first XI, sponsored by Specsavers, went down to a narrow defeat at Hartsholme, despite a century from Louis Kimber, whilst The Academy side, sponsored by Turnbulls, beat Bracebridge by 137 run,s with Oliver Bean scoring a century.

This weekend’s fixtures see Sleaford first XI entertain Market Deeping on Saturday, whilst Rustons are the visitors to play The Academy on Sunday.