Victory sees the Firsts edge even closer to title

Saihan Azim. ENGEMN00120130508105929
Saihan Azim. ENGEMN00120130508105929

A half century from Saihan Azim helped Boston Cricket Club Firsts extend their lead at the top of the South Lincs and Border League Premier Division.

In this top versus second fixture, the Mayflower men left rivals Woodhall Spa Seconds with a 38-run victory, stretching their advantage to 41 points in the South Lincs and Border League Premier Division.

Andy Hewitt.

Andy Hewitt.

Boston, who were without captain Tom Baxter and Australian Ben Vella, posted 252, before dismissing their opponents for 214.

Vice-captain Dave Newman won the toss and had no hesitation in opting to bat on what looked a very good surface.

Openers Kieran Evans and Newman led from the front and took the attack to the Woodhall Spa bowlers.

The scoreboard motored along and a very quickfire 92-run partnership gave Boston a top start off the first 12 overs.

With Evans dismissed for 46 and Ryan Croom falling for six, Paul Timby had claimed the first two wickets against his former club.

Another partnership started to form as Azim joined Newman and runs continued to accumulate before the latter fell for 48.

Azim was joined by Matthew Hood but, before long, Azim (51) and then Sam Elliott (five) were both back in the pavilion with Boston on 184-5.

Peter Mitchell and Hood (14) pushed Boston past the 200 mark to pick up the maximum batting points.

Mitchell’s unbeaten 43 helped take Boston to a very competitive 252, with Boston all out in the final over.

The pick of the bowlers would have been Peter Jackson (three) and Timby (four) as they picked up seven wickets between them.

After the tea interval, Scott Elleray started well with the ball.

Although a few boundaries appeared, an opening spell saw him remove three of the top four, which took the game away from Spa as he dismissed Timby, Nitin Joachim and Danny Wells, leaving Woodhall on 56-3.

When Andy Hewitt entered the attack he didn’t disappoint, picking up three big wickets which, along with a run-out from Azim, saw Boston on the verge of another vital victory.

Woodhall were struggling on 131-7 but a late order fightback primarily from Jackson, who did end the innings 43 not out, and Kieran Richardson and Alfie Lindsey saw Woodhall race past 200 and pick up maximum points from their batting innings.

With Boston in search of those final three wickets, Newman varied the bowlers in search of full points .

The return of Elliott to the attack saw him pick up the last two wickets after Croom had bowled for a short three-over spell.

Azim was named man of the match for his batting display which saw him claim 51 runs from just 40 balls.