Sleaford CC back to top of the Premier

Chamera Kapugedera
Chamera Kapugedera

The day ended with top defeating bottom as highflying Sleaford Cricket Club returned to the summit of the Lincs ECB Premier on Saturday.

Sleaford (sponsored by Baker Plant Hire) entertained Alford on the London Road ground, winning the toss and electing to bat.

Dakota Rodgers and Aayush Patel batted carefully against Steve Kirkham and Andrew White, but with the score on 22 Rodgers was caught behind by Lloyd Batchelor off Kirkham.

Chamara Kapugedera joined Patel and they began to move the ball around the ground, taking the Sleaford score past 50.

Patel gained in confidence with the experienced Kapugedera, who reached his personal 50, as Sleaford went past 100.

However with the score on 119 Patel was bowled by Graham Codd for a well-compiled 31.

Andy Hibberd joined Kapugedera and the partnership moved forward quickly with both playing freely.

The partnership put on a good quality 50 before Kaugedera was caught behind by Batchelor off Jack Wightwick for a very good 78.

Conor Harbron joined Hibberd and again they began to accumulate well before Hibberd was caught by Batchelor off Kirkham for 34, with Sleaford on 190 for 4.

The momentum of the Sleaford innings was lost as wickets fell quickly with Harbron going for 14, Matthew Wing for 1 and Drew Harbron for 0, leaving Sleaford on 208 for 8.

Angus Youles and Scott Tite came together and they stemmed the flow of wickets with Tite making 15 before going to Kirkham, and Youles 17 before he fell to Andrew White.

Sleaford reached a respectable 246 all out in the final over of the innings.

For Alford, Kirkham took 5 for 53, Jack Wightwick 3 for 65 and Batchelor claiming four victims behind the stumps.

Batchelor and George Gregory began for Alford against Youles and Tite, but with only 19 on the board Batchelor was caught by Kapugedera off Tite for 12 and, with the score on only 22, Gregory was run out by Drew Harbron for 7.

Wightwick and Andrew White played with care and attention but putting away wide deliveries.

Together they put on 50, but with the score on 87 White was caught by Conor Harbron off Dakota Rodgers for a determined 48 runs.

Graham Codd joined Wightwick and they pushed the score to 108 before Wightwick was stumped by Wing off Angus Youles for 34. Codd went for 3 to Rodgers and the same bowler had Kirkham caught by Youles for 5.

Sam Chatterton carried his bat but it was Kapugedera who took the final three wickets as Alford closed were all out in the 36th over for 157.

Kapugedera took 3 for 29 and Dakota Rodgers 3 for 35.

Sleaford won by 89 runs to go back to the top of the Lincolnshire ECB Premier League.

On Saturday Sleaford host second-place Bourne on the London Road ground (noon).