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O'Brien beats Woodhall Spa drum

Ben O’Brien put in a match-winning performance to keep Woodhall Spa at the top of the Readers Lincolnshire ECB Premier League, taking five Bracebridge Heath winnings before going on to hit an unbeaten 57 runs.

And Sleaford consolidated second place with a 20 point win over Bourne.

Bracebridge got off to a good start at Jubilee Park, reaching 88 for two.

But by the time top scorer Paul Cook was out for 68, the visitors were 116 for five and despite a good knock of 43 from David Whapplington, the final wicket fell on 166, O’Brien with 5-27 and Jack Hughes making four dismissals behind the stumps.

Woodhall lost a wicket before a run was scored but Jonny Cheer and Prasanna Jayawardene (68) took the total to 78 and O’Brien then came in and blasted 57 off 32 balls with eight fours and three sixes to take his side to victory, Cheer unbeaten on 41.

Sleaford reversed the first half result against Bourne who, in April, won by nine wickets after bowling their opponents out cheaply.

This time round, it was Bourne who were all out for 119, Alex Sears taking five wickets. Sleaford went on to win by 10 wickets thanks to Tim McIntosh with 65 and Tom Shorthouse with 45.

Market Deeping moved into third despite the only century of the day from Spalding’s new signing Nabeel Bhayla. The South African hit 104 and Mike Kearns contributed 56 as the visitors reached 231 for six.

But on Deeping’s good batting pitch, this total was always under threat and Chris Jones’ 88 and 50 from Richard Witt helped the home side to a four wicket win.

The bottom of the table clash resulted in a second successive win for Hartsholme for whom Kit Spence hit an unbeaten 86. This helped his side to 270 for seven which proved too much for Haxey who were all out for 168, Joe Scott making 65 and Henry Rush taking 5-69.

Lindum are now challenging for a place in the top half after a 37 run victory over Skegness. Lindum made 231 for seven, Will Wright top-scoring with 49, before bowling the seasiders out for 194, Saeed Bariwala contributing 53 and Karanjit Bansal taking 5-68 for Lindum.

Just seven points separate Skegness in fifth and eighth placed Lindum with Grimsby in seventh and Louth in sixth after notching up the highest total of the day at Augusta Street.

Stewart West almost made it to a ton, getting out on 98 and Jason Collinson hit an unbeaten 65 as Louth reached 308 for five. But the visitors were denied maximum points as Grimsby held on to their last wicket to finish on 175 for nine, Harry Warwick with 57.

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