Lincs ECB Premier: Alford see off Louth in derby

Louth Third XI line up before their semi-final at Messingham EMN-180207-101045002
Louth Third XI line up before their semi-final at Messingham EMN-180207-101045002

Alford CC moved out of the Lincs ECB Premier relegation places on Saturday as they took the derby honours against Louth.

Steve Kirkham did the damage for the Alford attack as he removed four of Louth’s top five batsmen, including the wicket of top scorer Xander Pitchers, bowled for 31.

Down the order, Matthew Wright and Graham West both chipped in with 25, but no-one was able to put together a fluent innings as the visitors were bowled out for just 150.

Rikki Bovey and Andrew White helped remove the tail, both finishing with 2 for 19.

In reply, Louth looked to be in business when Josh Court (2 for 38) dismissed openers in single figures, and Seb Darke then had Andrew White caught behind by Richard bell for 13.

But Bovey steadied the ship and guided the home side to their target, four wickets down, with an unbeaten 74, to end Louth’s three-match winning streak.

The result moved Alford out of the bottom two and up to 10th, while Louth slip to sixth.

Louth: L. Scott 12, P. Martin 11, X. Pitchers 31, R. Bell 9, S. Darke 0, M. Hamilton 25, A. Brindle 2, G. West 25, T. Cuthbert 7, J. Court 0, T. Ryder 5*, Extras 23. Total: 150.

Bowling: N. Bennett 4-0-22-0; S. Kirkham 12-1-45-4; B. McGilloway 6-1-20-1; R. Bovey 13-3-19-2; T. White 3-0-22-1; A. White 7-0-19-2.

Alford: N. Bennett 5, S. Lempard 6, A. White 13, R. Bovey 74*, G. Gregory 24, L. Kelly 15*, Extras 14. Total: 151-4.

Bowling: S. Darke 11-3-39-1; J. Court 14-1-38-2; X. Pitchers 9-1-22-0; T. Cuthbert 3.5-0-17-0; T. Ryder 3-0-3-0; P. Martin 5-0-19-0.

* Louth CC Third XI ventured west to Messingham for their Supplementary Cup semi-final having got through by default.

Louth’s inexperienced batting line-up were put in on a hot and sunny day and were given a rapid start by Wright Snr and Taylor who racked up 35 in only six overs before Taylor was bowled for 20.

Duell and Wright continued to add runs at a steady rate until Duell was bowled for nine.

Wright was caught behind for 25, sportingly walking, Sandy Snr was bowled for 15, and Sharma departed without scoring to leave the visitors stalling at 84-5 off 19 overs.

And Louth were unable to recover as Ringland was bowled for eight, Rowe stumped first ball and Sandy Jnr was run out in quick succession.

Wright Jnr was run out for a well made 14, and Burrell was last man out, run out for four, leaving Fisher unbeaten on two as Louth were all out for 116 in 27.2 of their 30 overs.

Three needless run outs added to their misery on a good batting track as Messingham youngster Joy returned remarkable figures of 6-2-10-5.

After a quick turnaround, Louth U15s pair Sandy Jnr (6-0-21-0) and Ringland opened the bowling and caused problems, but the ball didn’t go to hand and scoring was steady at four an over.

The introduction of spin again caused problems for the batsmen as Burrell (4-0-17-0) and Wright junior (6-0-21-0) bowled well together, but loose deliveries were put away, and at the halfway point Messingham were 58-0.

Sharma (4-1-16-1) soon made the breakthrough when Goudwe (38) was caught by Wright Snr.

Another spin option was tried through Rowe (2-0-6-0) before Ringland (6-0-24-1) returned to claim a wicket.

But Messingham eased to an eight-wicket victory despite a great effort in the field by Louth who pushed the game all the way in very hot conditions.

However, a lack of runs after a good start proved costly.