The recall of Louis Kimber (Cleethorpes CC) to the Lincolnshire team resulted in records tumbling when the county side travelled to Hertfordshire for their penultimate match in the Unicorns Eastern Division.
Rain delayed the start of the match on day one until the early afternoon and, on wining the toss , Lincolnshire elected to bat first on what proved to be a fine batting surface. Lincolnshire’s openers, Joe Kendall and Jack Timby fell early on and at 35 for 2 Hertfordshire has the upper hand. Shiv Thakor then joined Louis Kimber and steadied the innings and added 129 for the third wicket before Thakor was dismissed for 47. Sam Johnson then joined Kimber and they gradually assumed control, adding a record breaking 262 for the fourth wicket. This beat the County Clubs previous highest partnership for the fourth wicket of 217 set in 1990 by Mark Fell and Steve Warman. Both batsman were severe on the bowling with Kimber especially dominant. He was finally caught on the boundary for 246, an innings which contained 12 sixes and 18 fours. This became the County Clubs highest ever individual score beating that set by Raymond Frearson (Skegness CC) OF 232, against Cambridgeshire at Grantham in 1925. At the end of the allotted ninety overs Lincolnshire had totalled 428 for 4, taking maximum batting points with Sam Johnson on 92 not out (7 sixes and 2 fours).
On day two Hertfordshire began the task of trying to overtake Lincolnshire’s huge total and to their credit they made a fine start in attempting to do so. A first wicket partnership of 151 saw them in a string position before Alex Moor dismissed Dominic Chatfield for 70. The introduction of Adam Tillcock into the attack slowed the run rate and resulted in further wickets falling reducing the hosts to 228 for four including the vital wicket of Hamza Ahmed for 95. Shiv Thakor then assisted in reducing the home side to 331 for 8 before they concluded their 90 overs on 357 for 8, a lead for Lincolnshire of 71. Shiv Thakor, 3 for 89 and Tillcock 3 for 99 were Lincolnshire’s most successful bowlers.
Lincolnshire’s second innings started poorly and they were quickly reduced to 59 for 5, a lead of 130. Hertfordshire were now well in the game. Shiv Thakor and Adam Tillcock then put on a stand of 77 before Shiv Thakor was dismissed for 47. Tillcock followed soon after for a valuable 56. Carl Wilson and Usman Arshad then extended Lincolnshire’s lead past 200. Wilson with 30 and Arshad with 39. Lincolnshire’s innings concluded on 215, a lead of 286.
A maximum of 50 overs remained in the day for Hertfordshire to score 287 for victory. At 106 for 1, they were well placed, although their required run rate was slowly climbing. The dismissal of Chatfield for 57, by Adam Tillcock was crucial. Thereafter three quick wickets by James Dobson took the game away for the home side as they finished on 289 for 6 off 52 overs. Dobson 3 for 17 off 9 overs was Lincolnshire’s most successful bowler.
Lincolnshire took 11 points from the match and Hertfordshire took 9. Lincolnshire are now fourth in the table and need to finish in the top five to compete in next seasons Eastern Division One. Their final championship fixture is at Grantham CC, when they meet Bedfordshire commencing on Sunday, 1st September (10.30am start).
Before that however, they are in the T20 finals day at Wormsley, on Sunday 25th August where they meet Dorset in the semi final (10am start). The winners meeting either Buckinghamshire or Hertfordshire later that day in the final.
Don’t forget you can also watch an all time Lincolnshire Legends XI taking on a Lincolnshire Premier League XI in a one off exhibition 100 ball match at Lindum Cricket Club this coming Friday (23rd). The match starts at 6.30 on the night and will be played to the new 100 ball rules, with pink balls under lights as part of the Lindum floodlit cricket festival. This is a tickets event, to get your tickets (£5 adults, £3 under 16’s) please visit the Lincs cricket website or follow this link