Peterborough Town's near three-year unbeaten run comes to a shuddering halt as Finedon's abrasive skipper dominates the action, wins for Bourne, Market Deeping and Castor, while Ramsey topple the leaders

Peterborough Town’s brilliant run in the Northants Premier Division came to a shuddering halt on the worst possible day.

By Alan Swann
Sunday, 24th July 2022, 11:56 am
Sulemain Saleem bowling for Peterborough Town against Finedon. Photo: David Lowndes.
Sulemain Saleem bowling for Peterborough Town against Finedon. Photo: David Lowndes.

Title rivals Finedon were in town and if ever a team was equipped to take advantage of the home side’s crippling injury and unavailability list it was a top-class XI with power, strength, quality and, crucially, great depth in both batting and bowling.

Finedon won the latest high scoring encounter at Bretton Gate by 42 runs which didn’t do total justice to their superiority. After piling up 321-4 in their 50 overs the visitors never looked likely to lose even though Town eventually replied with a creditable 279 all-out.

It was a first defeat since September, 2019 for Town when Finedon also upset them at the Gate. In 41 matches since the city side have sealed three top-flight titles and set out in pursuit of a fourth. They have now lost top spot to their conquerors, but remain well in touch, although it’s tough to see this Finedon side losing too many games in the win-lose half of the competition.

David Clarke on his way to 75 for Peterborough Town against Finedon. Photo; David Lowndes.

Finedon skipper Drew Brierley was the game’s dominant personality, but not always in a good way. He did his best to sour a brutal ton, three relatively cheap wickets, two catches, a run out, some excellent outfielding and astute captaincy, by noisily charging about the playing surface in a narcissistic manner every time something went his way, which was often.

It wasn’t a good look, but not entirely unsurprising behaviour for an abrasive character who apparently tests the patience of many who cross his path, seemingly without fear of retribution. An early season ban carried over from the 2021 campaign was strangely set aside in the close season, along with possible suspensions for a few other miscreants. On this day only Town seamer Mark Edwards appeared to incur the displeasure of the umpires for a late-innings verbal outburst.

Brierley played superbly though. After teenage leg-spinner Rohan Kundaje had impressed again by taking a wicket in each of his first two overs to leave Finedon 76-2, Brierley battered a makeshift Town attack (they were missing four frontline bowlers and a fifth, Nick Green, played, but couldn’t bowl) for 118 in 95 balls, while dominating a third-wicket partnership of 181 with Callum Berrill (98no).

Town enjoyed a steady start in reply without getting in touch with the required rate. Likeable Town captain David Clarke was motoring after a scratchy start before he was dismissed for 75, inevitably by Brierley who promptly set off on a long stretch of the Bretton Gate square howling with delight causing many heads to shake, and not just from those in the home camp.

If Town needed motivation for the rest of the season they received it.

Elsewhere Bourne remain in control of the LIncs Premier Division following a 41-run win over Lindum at the Abbey Lawn, but keep a eye on Market Deeping who won for the eighth straight game, the latest a six-wicket win over a strong Grantham side which featured an unbeaten century from opener Josh Smith.

Ramsey upset leaders Wisbech by 38 runs in Cambs Division One thanks to 79 from Ben Saunders and 5-25 from Jordan Cafferkey who provoked a home collapse from 167-2 to 210 all out after 83 from Danny Haynes and 61 from James Williams.

It was still a reasonable day for Wisbech as the team that started in second place, Eaton Socon, also lost leaving Foxton Granta to move above them following a 183-run win over bottom club Stamford.

In Division Two third-placed Castor beat struggling Kimbolton by 10 wickets, while leaders Blunham eased to a 6-wicket success at Ufford Park.


Northants Premier Division

Finedon 321-4 (D. Brierley 118, C. Berrill 98no, R. Kundaje 2-61) beat Peterborough Town 279 (D. Clarke 75, C. Milner 37, A. Mitchell 35) by 42 runs.

Overstone 285-9 (J. Sales 86, M. Gouldstone 80, W. Park 6-56) beat Oundle 254 (S. Jarvis 58, T. Simeons 51) by 31 runs.

Lincs Premier Division

Bourne 268-8 (P. Morgan 84, B. Wright 64, R. Bentley 59) beat Lindum 227-9 (J. Berry 3-40) by 41 runs

Market Deeping 180-4 (J. Smith 100no, J. Hook 30no) beat Grantham 177 (K. Sainsbury 3-19, J. Smith 3-40, A. Hafeez 2-30) by 6 wkts

Louth 243-5 beat Spalding 187 by 56 runs

Cambs Division One

Newmarket 247 (C. Young 6-47) beat March 171 (R. Pitigala 55) by 66 runs

Foxton 294-4 (D. Rice 128, A. Webster 108, A. Hulme 2-37, T. Huggins 2-55) beat Stamford 111 (T. Juggins 40no) by 183 runs.

Ramsey 248-6 (B. Saunders 79, T. Morrison 44, G. Gowler 3-50) beat Wisbech 210 (D. Haynes 83, J. Williams 61, J. Cafferkey 5-25, M. Saunders 3-26) by 38 runs.

Cambs Division Two

Castor 124-0 (M. Papworth 66no, M. Wheat 38no) beat Kimbolton 123 (S. Dockerill 4-42) by 10 wkts.

Blunham 159-4 (T. Hussain 3-37) beat Ufford Park 156 by 6 wkts.