CRICKET: Victory seals Barrowden promotion

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WAKERLEY and Barrowden clinched promotion to Division 6 of the Rutland League with an emphatic victory at home to Whittlesey yesterday.

The visitors won the toss, elected to bat and were immediately in trouble as Matt Green found the edge of Cox’s bat in the second over, with Sam Hodson taking a routine catch at slip. Green followed the early breakthrough soon after, bowling the visiting captain Moody for 12, making the score 19-2 after 10 overs.

Denton and Wright attempted to rebuild for Whittlesey, making it through until the 20th over before Denton provided a simple catch for Glenn Moody off the bowling of Chris White.

At the halfway stage, Whittlesey were 35-3 and looking like making an attempt to bat out the 45 overs as opposed to setting a challenging total but this backfired soon after the drinks break when Sam Hodson bowled Swan for 5 and then had Wright LBW in his next over, opening the door to the tail of the batting order.

Jonny White returned and clean bowled Kershaw (0), Ilsley (0) and Campopiano (3), with a run out sandwiched in the middle as the visitors were skittled for just 51 in 28.1 overs.

White was the pick of the Barrowden bowling, finishing with 3-11 from 8.1 overs, while Green ended his spell with 2-12, Hodson 2-19 and Chris White 1-7.

Barrowden required 52 runs for victory, and their fifth straight win in the league and in order to reach maximum batting points the Rutland side needed to reach their target in just 10 overs.

Marc Eldred and Jonny White were sent in to open the batting in an attempt to ensure the 20 points, and Eldred clubbed Moody over long-on for a huge six to set the tempo. White played well alongside, combining power with finesse, making 20 before he was caught in the deep.

With just 9 more runs required for victory, Barrowden were cruising towards the target and still had four overs in hand to reach the maximum points. Hodson came in at number three and made a quick 5 not out, and another huge six from Eldred secured the win in double-quick time as Barrowden finished 53-1 in 7 overs and Eldred 19 not out.

Barrowden’s final league game of the season is away at Nassington 2nd XI on Sunday with just seven points required to win the division.

Skipper Chris White said: “We’re in a very fortunate position that we’re not going into the final game having to get a specific result.

“The performances in the past few weeks have been outstanding by everyone who has been involved and it’s been a great side to be around.

“The whole team have been brilliant. For a club like ours to win five straight league games, be promoted to Division 6 for next season, and be in with a shout of winning the league, it’s fantastic.

“For such a young team, we’ve done really well throughout the season and we can say that we’ve earned our position and promotion. Now we just want to finish the season well and have some fun.”

Before the trip to Nassington, Barrowden play a friendly at home to Houghton-on-the-Hill on Saturday, starting at 1pm.