STAMFORD and Billingborough both recorded big scores as they picked up vital wins in the South Lincolnshire and Border League on Saturday.
Spalding scraped home by eight runs to hang on to top place in Division One but Billingborough and Stamford Town closed the gap as both picked up 20 points to the leaders’ 17.
Spalding were bowled out for 128 by Skegness 2nd, only reaching that total thanks to a late rally by Jamie Juckes and Luke Whitworth who put on 47 for the eighth wicket. The Skegness innings followed much the same pattern but the final wicket fell on 120.
For second-placed Billingborough, Geordie Scott took his individual total for the season to 865 with an innings of 141 as his side piled on the runs at Woodhall Spa. Dave Newman hitting 98 in an opening stand of 259 with Scott.
The visitors made 327 for five before bowling Woodhall 2nd out for 181.
Stamford were also among the runs with three players (Zac Chappell 78, Neil Williams 57, Bryan Bennett snr 56no) making half centuries in their total of 278 for six. Sleaford 2nd were then bowled out for 147.
Lower down the table, Grantham pulled themselves clear of the relegation zone thanks to Darren Ashley’s six for 19 which helped bowl Market Deeping 2nd out for 68, a total Grantham overtook for the loss of three wickets.
Welby have built an almost insurmountable lead at the top of Division Two following their 10 wicket victory over Thomas Cook in which 17 year old Jake Pollard hit an unbeaten 52 and took five wickets for seven runs.
And at the bottom of the table, Baston recorded a good win over third placed Stamford Town 2nd to move out of the relegation zone.
Market Deeping 2nd 68 (Ashley 6-19), Grantham 69-3; Belton Park 116 (Cusack 5-33), Moulton Harrox 59 (A Sheardown 5-11); Spalding 128, Skegness 2nd 120; Billingborough 327-5, Woodhall Spa 2nd 181; Stamford Town 278-6, Sleaford 2nd 147; Lindum Ramblers 146 (Watkins 95), Bourne 2nd 129.
Stamford Town 2nd 136-7, Baston 137-7; Billingborough 2nd 63 (N Gilbert 5-23), Blankney 64-3; Cavaliers 191-8 (Sweary 61), Heckington 63; Thomas Cook 83 (Pollard 5-7), Welby 85-0 (Pollard 52no); Moulton Harrox Sun 138, Spalding 2nd 92 (J Barnett 5-33).