Stewart smashes a sensational century

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Lloyd Stewart blasted a 
superb century as Baston began their season with a nervy victory at Moulton Harrox.

Baston were put into bat on a green wicket and started slowly, losing Ant Morris (4), John Lamin (10) and debutant Mark Richardson (1) early on to leave Baston 45-3 after 16 overs.

Chris Bower joined Jon Howard and they managed to get the scoreboard moving, with Bower in particular showing some good early season fluency before being trapped lbw for 27.

Baston were at 94-4 after 25 overs when 59-year-old Lloyd Stewart arrived at the crease. He soon put a lean 2012 - when he managed just 64 runs in eight innings - behind him.

Stewart batted aggressively, scoring boundaries all around the wicket while Jon Howard (51) played the anchor.

Adam Hilless went out at number seven with his the aim of keeping Stewart on strike. Lloyd smashed a six over wide mid-on before reaching his 50.

Disaster almost struck when he hurt his knee sprinting a quick single but Howard returned as his runner and Stewart felt even more free to go for boundaries.He smashed two sixes back over the bowler’s head with one going into a nearby garden.

He reached 88 on strike going into the last over. He drove the first ball back over the bowler for six, blocked the second ball, and missed the third and fourth ball, leaving him six short of his century with two balls remaining.

A quick two off the penultimate ball left Lloyd needing four, but he smashed it over a tree to give him 102 not out, and Baston a healthy 232-7 from their 45 overs.

It was the first century scored by a Baston player for over 10 years, and possibly one of the best for much longer, with 14 fours and five sixes off just 72 balls.

Baston then took early wickets, rocking Moulton at 80-4, before a fifth wicket partnership of 123.

Hibbert (64) fell to Felix Cunningham in the 40th over, with Moulton needing 30 off 5.2 overs.

A combination of good fielding, tight bowling from Tim Dyer (2-43) and Felix Cunningham (4-18) left Moulton 12 runs short on 221 all out.

Dyer said: “We’re all delighted for Lloyd getting this ton. He is a legend at this club, and has shown his class today.”