Louth Taverners: Critchell and Ahmed pave the way

Keaton Critchell (left) and captain Zubair Ahmed starred in Louth Taverners' victory over Alford EMN-160516-153054002
Keaton Critchell (left) and captain Zubair Ahmed starred in Louth Taverners' victory over Alford EMN-160516-153054002
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Louth Taverners defeated Division One leaders Alford in the East Lindsey League at London Road on Saturday to secure a very important win.

Skipper Zubair Ahmed won the toss and sent Louth openers Keaton Critchell and Richard Bell out to have first bat.

Critchell attacked the Alford bowlers and took the score to 64 when Richard was out.

Keaton kept on attacking and reached a quick 50 and was looking well set for his first century for Louth, hitting 11 boundaries and five sixes, when he was bowled by Forster for 94, trying to clear the rope to reach his ton.

With the score on 121-2, Alford’s bowlers came back into the game taking regular wickets to leave Louth on 143-7.

Asghar (22) launched a counter-attack to help Louth up to 189 from 34 overs, but the hosts would have liked to play out their overs and post a 200-plus total.

Alford started their chase aggressively with Sam Lampard, particularly, attacking the Louth bowlers.

With the score on 48 the dangerous Lampard was bowled by Zia and Louth breathed a sigh of relief.

Critchell came on to bowl and kept the score in check with a tight line and length in a tight spell of quick bowling (6-2-8-1).

Louth skipper Ahmed used his medium pace swing bowling to keep the pressure on and struck in his first over.

He took two further wickets in each of his fourth and fifth overs to finish with excellent figures of 5-0-21-5.

With the score on 88-7, Louth thought the match was in their hands, but Tom Perry and Codd had other ideas.

They took their partnership to 40 before Waheed made the crucial breakthrough.

With the run rate creeping up, the pressure told on Alford who lost their last few wickets trying to reach the target, giving Louth a 34-run win.

Louth next host Sutton-on-Sea on June 5 at London Road.