Lincs go top of table after late run-chase


Lincolnshire won a thrilling fourth Unicorns Eastern Division Championship match of the season at Bedfordshire by seven wickets to go top .

A maximum 24 points, thanks to full batting and bowling bonus points, together with results elsewhere took them ten points clear.

The county’s next three-day fixture is at Jesmond CC from Sunday, 30th July, against Northumberland.

Lincolnshire, who gave county debuts to Woodhall Spa’s Jack Timby and Ross Dixon, quickly reduced Bedfordshire to 35 for three as Alex Willerton and Matt Carter took early wickets.

A brilliant direct throw by debutant Dixon ran out home captain Andy Reynoldson for 33 and Willerton, bowling with great pace, took two further wickets to leave the hosts on 98 for dix.

The home side scored late-order runs to total 183 all out with Willerton going on to take six for 15.

Lincolnshire lost the early wicket of Timby in their first innings in reply, but Dan Freeman and Matt Lineker took them to 87 for one by the close of play on the first day.

Freeman was dismissed early on day two by Monty Panesar for 30, but Sam Wood joined Lineker to put Lincolnshire in control.

The pair added 164 for the third wicket before Wood was trapped lbw for 85.

Lineker fell immediately to Panesar for a fine 138 after hitting the former England bowler around the ground.

Adam Tillcock (56) and Dominic Brown (45) continued the onslaught to secure maximum batting points and Carl Wilson (36 not out) and Ross Dixon (16 not out) took the visitors to 419 for 6.

Bedfordshire’s second innings was in contrast to their first as they battled hard to save the game, scoring 387 in eight hours and 135 overs.

That leftLincolnshire requiring 152 for victory in 25 minutes plus a minimum of 17 overs in the final hour.

Wood was dismissed in the first over and Lineker fell for a quick fire 25 with the total on 39. Freeman and Dominic Brown scored rapidly to add 95 for the third wicket and after Freeman fell for 66 off 46 balls, Brown finished the match with a huge six as Lincolnshire won with more than four overs to spare.