County League: Barkby United 2s back in promotion hunt

Louis Botting returns to the pavilion after a quickfire 91 against Croft EMN-160609-131833002

Louis Botting returns to the pavilion after a quickfire 91 against Croft EMN-160609-131833002

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While rain wiped out all but a handful of Saturday’s County League matches, Barkby United Second XI wrapped up a lightning quick win to boost their promotion hopes in Division Five East.

The forecast looked bleak at Beeby Road, and rain inevitably delayed the start, but almost two hours later, the rain finally cleared and a 26-over-a-side contest was agreed.

Barkby opener Kruz Ghorecha was bounced out for just two, but Louis Botting and Conor Percy smashed the Croft attack to all four corners of the ground as Botting raced to his half-century in just 20 balls.

Percy (32) was out to a full toss, but Botting continued to score heavily alongside Matt Harby with Barkby flying at 10 runs per over.

The opener was eventually dismissed for a remarkable 91, caught at long on.

Wickets fell cheaply as the hosts looked to get to 200 as quickly as possible, and Harby (26) and Eamonn Bourke (23 not out) ensured Barkby reached 202-9 inside 20 overs.

Captain Cookson called the declaration, giving Barkby six extra overs to bowl Croft out and gain the maximum 30 points.

As Croft looked to block, Dave Botting removed one opener for 0 before Cookson took wicket number two, caught at point by Jack Wood.

Spinner Bourke (7-2-15-2) picked up two quick wickets, one thanks to a good slip catch by the diving Ryan Waplington, in a tight spell.

Louis Botting (6-2-7-2) also picked up two wickets, including the remaining opener, bowled after batting over 20 overs for just 11.

Waplington (3.4-2-3-3) bowled batsmen seven, eight and 10 to secure victory inside 27 overs as Croft were dismissed for just 35.

The result sets up a frantic finish to the season with Barkby back in the promotion hunt. They host Illston Abbey on Saturday in their penultimate fixture.