Everards County League: Seconds’ victory charge held up

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A big winning draw earned Barkby United Seconds a 21-point haul at Bharat Sports on Saturday.

Skipper Adam Cookson lost the toss and Barkby were put into bat with Eamonn Bourke and Jack Wilkinson providing stability at the top of the order.

Wilkinson grafted hard for his five runs, seeing off the new ball and the opening bowlers before he was caught at cover, while Bourke scored a classy 48 before he was bowled.

Louis Botting and Conor Percy made use of this platform, and took the attack to the hosts, looking to score boundaries.

Botting (45) was caught after sending the ball skyward, but Ben Hollis’ tough run of form continued with an unfortunate two-ball duck.

Percy got in on the act and made 36 before providing simple catching practice to the keeper.

Ryan Waplington and Jack Wood combined intelligent running between the wickets with range hitting. Wood made a quickfire 24 before being caught by a neck-high beamer, but Waplington (42 not out), carried on punishing the bad balls.

Lloyd Phillips came in for the final few overs and scored 10, before sacrificing his wicket to get Waplington on strike as Barkby posted 224-7.

Louis Botting opened the bowling with James Kirk who had the Bharat opener trapped lbw for eight. Kirk then cleaned up the other opener for two as Barkby made a great start.

Bharat were not keen for a run chase and shut up shop immediately, but this didn’t stop Dave Botting from claiming four wickets in a 12-over spell. He removed batsmen numbers three to six with catches from Wilkinson, Waplington, Percy and a sharp catch from keeper Phillips to finish with great figures of 12-5-23-4.

Eamonn Bourke (6-2-7-1) continued his fine day with a sensational spell of turn and bounce. He was unplayable at times, but somehow only took one wicket, caught by Conor Percy, in six impressive overs.

With Bharat seven wickets down and Cookson (6-2-15-0) unable to find a wicket for the first time this year, L. Botting (11-3-18-0) and Kirk returned.

Kirk (10-2-35-3) found a way through a stonewall defence to clean bowl the number nine, but Bharat Sports batted out the full 45 overs for just 101 runs with the loss of eight wickets.

Having reduced the gap to the promotion spots in Division Five East, Barkby host Market Harborough Seconds at Beeby Road on Saturday.