Cricket: Impressive play by rivals – then the rain intervenes
SOME attractive cricket was served up for seaside spectators when Cleethorpes 2nds hosted Barton Town on yet another rain-ravaged day in the Lincolnshire County Cricket League.
In the end it was impossible to complete this top-flight game, so the match points were shared equally, with bonus points added.
Title-chasing Barton ended up with 12 points and the home team collected eight. But had the game failed to go ahead, the teams would have managed only five apiece.
So it was certainly worth being in the field rather than sitting on the sidelines.
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Visiting skipper John Knapton won the toss and invited Andy Haith's Meggies to bat first.
Openers Stuart Airey and Ben Marris added 37 runs before the latter was bowled for ten by Barton's overseas player from Down Under, Adam McDermott.
Cleethorpes' international from China, Jiang Shuyao, came in at three on the card, but saw the departure of Airey for 28 – caught behind by Ian Andrew off the bowling of Rob Brice.
Brice knows the Chichester Road ground very well, as a former Clee player.
Mike Chamberlain added 12 before a good stand developed between Shuyao and Ian Mansfield.
The overseas players was next to return to the pavilion, being bowled by Marc Foster for 41. And the same seamer also got through Mansfield's defences when the middle-order man had reached 42.
Captain Knapton and Foster bowled well to ensure the Cleethorpes tail did not wag and the home team were dismissed for 159 in the 41st over of the innings.
All-rounder Knapton – the sixth bowler to join the Barton attack – finished with four for 16 from only five overs, while Foster returned figures of three for 23 in 6.3.
There was a wicket apiece for Brice, McDermott and Will Yates, while Yates and keeper Andrew both held two catches.
Barton showed very positive intent after tea, but only 22 overs were possible, during which they rattled along nicely to 144 for four – just 16 runs shy of victory.
Gareth Mellors missed out, making only two before being bowled by Matty Owen.
But fellow opener Dan Tolson – a former Cleethorpes player – scored 31, big-hitting James Barker 43, all-rounder McDermott 38 and Brice an undefeated 27.
The best partnership of the innings was a second-wicket effort of 63 between Tolson and Barker.
Cleethorpes employed only three bowlers, the best return being John Zielinski's three for 57 in 11 overs, while Owen managed one for 38 during his six.
Due to the weather, the remaining Saturday matches in the premier division were cancelled without a ball being bowled.