County League: Thorpe Arnold Seconds snatch title on final day

Thorpe Arnold seconds. Back row: Tim Hirst, Andrew Sibun, Mel Picker, Matt Lane, Paul Learmonth, Gerrard Starling, George Exton; Front: Lewis Humphreys, Jordan Hirst, Mark Carnham, Alex Renwick.
Thorpe Arnold seconds. Back row: Tim Hirst, Andrew Sibun, Mel Picker, Matt Lane, Paul Learmonth, Gerrard Starling, George Exton; Front: Lewis Humphreys, Jordan Hirst, Mark Carnham, Alex Renwick.
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Thorpe Arnold celebrated into the night as their Second XI clinched the County League Division Six East title on the final day of the season.

The villagers had spent much of the season at the summit, but they became locked in a battle with Bharat Sports and Shree Sanatan, and went into the final round of matches trailing Bharat by 15 points.

The overnight leaders were able to take just four wickets before their match at Narborough and Littlethorpe was abandoned as rain fell, giving them seven points from the match.

Over at Thorpe, in a game reduced to 43 overs a side, the hosts restricted Fleckney Village to just 103-7 thanks to some tight bowling from Chris Waldron whose 12 overs went for just 18 runs and brought three wickets.

There were also miserly spells from Tim Hirst (1 for 18 from 12 overs), Lane (2 for 20 from eight) and Gerard Starling (0 for 8 from six) as Thorpe were set 104 to chase with the rain closing in.

Thorpe lost Alex Renwick and captain Jordan Hirst cheaply in reply, but opener Mark Carnell capped a fine personal season with 46, and Waldron made 33, as the home side wrapped up a seven-wicket win – and the title – in 25 overs.

* Queniborough finished the season in second place in Division Four East.

They wrapped up their 16th win from 22 games by eight wickets at Leicester Caribbean Seconds after bowling out the hosts for 90 inside 21 overs.

Queniborough’s total of 439 points would have been good enough to top several of the league’s divisions as they finished more than 100 points ahead of third-placed Illston Abbey.

But they were pipped by Ketton Sports whose 18 wins left them 36 points clear at the top.

Yet there were reasons to celebrate for the club as their third team finished top of Division Eight East and will join Egerton Park Seconds in Division Seven next term.

* Barkby United Second XI avoided any potential relegation worries in their first season in Division Three.

United finished two places and 28 points above the drop zone in eighth despite ending their campaign with a six-wicket loss at champions Ashby Hastings.

Syston Town Seconds ended the season tied for fifth place with Melton Mowbray after a heavy final day defeat at home to Shree Sanatan.