It’s as you were at the top of the Northants Premier Division table as the three title contenders recorded facile wins today (August 19).
Leaders Rushton despatched next-to-bottom Stony Stratford by five wickets, while reigning champions Old Northamptonians saw off a weak Geddington team by eight wickets, but Peterborough Town’s nine-wicket blitz of Rushden was arguably the most impressive success.
Town travelled to Short Stocks without main man Paul McMahon to face a team who had beaten them at Bretton Gate earlier in the summer.
But big-name players have to step up in times of crisis and fast bowler Joe Dawborn and star batsman Asim Butt did just that, ably assisted by emerging teenagers Mohammed Danyaal and Kieran Judd.
Rushden breezed along quite merrily in the early stages of their innings, but once Dawborn had dismissed dangerman professional Chanaka Ruwansiri for 24 they capsized, losing their last nine wickets for just 68 for a total of 108 all out.
Dawborn finished with 5-54 from his full complement of 15 overs, while Danyaal also caught the eye with a spell of 4-21 from just seven overs.
Town lost captain David Clarke with the score on 20, but Butt blazed his way to 64 not out from just 53 balls, a knock that included 11 fours.
He was helped in a partnership of 91 by Judd whose return to full fitness couldn’t have been better timed. Judd cracked four fours and a rare six in his unbeaten 36 from just 29 balls as Town reached a match-winning 111-1 in just 16 overs and one ball.
It all leaves Rushton on top, seven points clear of Town and eight ahead of ONs. Town host Rushton next Saturday (August 26) so something must give.
Rushton host Town in the first semi-final of the Northants T20 Cup tomorrow (August 20, 10.30am). Old Northamptonians tackle Finedon in the second semi-final with the final scheduled for 4.30pm.
O. Woodhouse b Dawborn 10
S. Kumar lbw Dawborn 15
C. Ruwansiri b Dawborn 24
B. Paine b Dawborn 1
W. Bates lbw Danyaal 5
P. Warwick b Danyaal 3
J. Barron c Milner b Dawborn 1
T. Smith b Danyaal 10
J. Gaul c Dawborn b Danyaal 12
K. Antonaccio not out 8
C. Law c Judd b Oldham 1
Bowling: J. Dawborn 15-1-54-5; J. Smith 7-0-23-0; M. Danyaal 7-3-21-4; D. Oldham 1.3-0-3-1.
A. Butt not out 64
D. Clarke c Law b Gaul 5
K. Judd not out 36
TOTAL (1 wkt) 111
Bowling: J. Gaul 7-0-39-1; C. Law 4-1-21-0; O. Warwick 3-0-26-0; C. Ruwansiri 1.1-0-19-0; O. Woodhouse 1-0-6-0.
Bottom club Wollaston have been putting together some decent results of late and Oundle had to work hard before clinching a four-wicket win at Milton Road.
Off-spinner Jack Bolsover’s 5-22 and 3-32 from seamer Bashrat Hussain helped bowl Wollaston out for 153.
Ben Smith’s unbeaten 53 eventually saw Oundle home with almost four overs to spare.
OUNDLE beat WOLLASTON by 4 wkts
Wollaston 153 (J. Bolsover 5-22, B. Hussain 3-32).
Oundle 156-6 (B. Smith 53no, B. Graves 28, P. Adams 22).