Evans’ 116 extends the gap at top of the table

Kieran Evans.
Kieran Evans.

Boston Cricket Club stretched their lead at the top of the South Lincs and Border League Premier Division to 31 points.

Kieran Evans’ century helped the Mayflower men claim a 114-run victory over Sleaford Seconds, who began the day as their closest rivals in the race for the title.

Boston skipper Tom Baxter won the toss and elected to bat.

Evans and the incoming Tom Poole got Boston off to a steady start, before a mistimed stroke from Poole (15) saw Conor Harbron claim Sleaford’s first wicket.

Ryan Croom was the next to depart, bowled by the pace of Jacob Smith for 16.

With Evans joined by Baxter the pair set about re-building the innings, aided by drops in the field.

A 108 run partnership followed before Baxter chipped straight to long-on to be dismissed for 44 off the bowling of Giles Goddard.

Saihan Azim arrived at the crease and he began finding the boundary at will, as did Evans, who brought up his first century in two years in style with two sixes.

“It was a very important knock for us,” said Baxter.

“He hasn’t got the runs he deserved over the past few weeks.

“He was dropped early but went on to make them pay and that is what you have to do sometimes.”

Evans was eventually dismissed for 116 and that brought Scott Elleray (14) to the crease.

Elleray’s big-hitting exploits are clearly well-known as the field spread to stop the boundaries.

His second ball disappeared over the sightscreen as Boston pushed past 200 and closer to 250.

Matthew Hood (six not out) and Azim (30 not out) ensured Boston finished their overs on 258-5 from their 45 allotted overs.

Although Boston had 258 on the board, Sleaford would have fancied their chances until their top batsmen, Simon Godby, was dismissed for two off the third ball of the innings and his replacement Mason Mansfield was dismissed for zero before the first over was complete, Elleray claiming both victims.

“When Sleaford were 3-2 we knew we were in the pole position,” Baxter added.

“The game was definitely in our favour.”

Sam Elliott dismissed Ben Bulmer, Oliver Bean and Angus Youles in his very good eight over spell.

Baxter then went on to pick up top scorer, Phil Sneath for 38 when Andy Hewitt took a smart catch at mid-wicket.

At 84-6, Sleaford showed a lot more application and the bad weather casued some worry in the Boston camp.

When Croom ran out Tom Brooke for five, Sleaford were on 94-7 and Boston were edging towards victory.

Baxter’s impressive spell saw him pick up the final three wickets to end with figures of 4-30 from his 12 overs.

His quicker ball bowled Smith before going on to trap Harbron and Goddard LBW.

Sleaford were finally bowled out for 144 from 35 overs, giving Boston a comfortable 114-run victory against their closest rivals.

Elliott also ended with good figures of 3-30 from his nine overs.

Boston’s 20 point victory saw them move 45 points ahead of Sleaford, with Woodhall Spa Seconds moving into second spot, 31 points adrift of the Mayflower men with seven contests remaining.

Evans was named man of the match.